The Putin - Trump Summit Is A Big Win For Putin

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin during the their bilateral meeting at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria/File Photo/File Photo

Andrwe Osborn, Reuters: For Putin, Helsinki talks with Trump a win before he even sits down

MOSCOW (Reuters) - For U.S. President Donald Trump, a summit with Vladimir Putin risks a political backlash at home and abroad. For the Russian president, however, the fact the summit is even happening is already a big geopolitical win.

Despite Russia’s semi-pariah status among some Americans and U.S. allies, the Kremlin has long been trying to arrange a summit, betting that Putin and Trump will get on well and stop a sharp downwards spiral in bilateral ties.

While nobody on either side expects big breakthroughs, including on U.S. sanctions, the summit is seen by Moscow as U.S. recognition of Russia’s status as a great power and an overdue U.S. realization that its interests must be taken into account.

“The fact that a Putin-Trump meeting will happen says only one thing: that for all its hysteria, the United States is not able to isolate or ignore Russia,” said Alexei Pushkov, a prominent Russian senator from the ruling United Russia party.

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WNU Editor: Officials on both sides, the pundits, everyone is downplaying this meeting and what it may accomplish. They should not .... my gut is telling me that this is going to be a very successful summit, and it will lay the groundwork for better relations in the future.

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