Vladimir Putin denies Russian Federation interfered in 2016 USA elections

But the USA president said Mr Putin was "incredibly strong and powerful today" in his contention that Russian Federation had nothing to do with election interference.

The US president said that the bilateral meetings had gotten off to a "very good start", after both leaders met for more than two hours behind closed doors, with only translators present.

'It followed more than two hours of one-on-one discussions involving just the USA and Russian leaders, with only translators present.

"We have not been getting along well for the last number of years", Trump said after arriving at the Presidential Palace in Finland's capital, where the leaders are meeting.

Toomey added, "Putin insists that the Russian government has nothing to do with meddling in our elections".

In response, Coats shot back that USA intelligence has been "clear in our assessments of Russian meddling" and that the intelligence agencies "we will continue to provide unvarnished and objective intelligence in support of our national security". I will say this: "I don't see any reason why it would be", Trump said.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, back to a camera, listens to U.S. Sen. After Trump concluded his remarks, American reporters shouted several questions about whether he would bring up election meddling during his discussions with Putin.

"President Putin says it's not Russian Federation". We will always take the word of Putin, a former longtime KGB official whose actions around the world have run counter to American interests, against those of America's key intelligence agencies.

"For the president of the United States to side with President Putin against American law enforcement, American defense officials, and American intelligence agencies is thoughtless, dangerous, and weak", said Chuck Schumer, the senior Democrat in the Senate.

Putin insisted the claims were "sheer nonsense".

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Trump held his meeting just days after a special prosecutor in the United States indicted 12 Russian agents for stealing Democratic Party documents to help him win the vote.

Early in the day, as Pres. Trump outlined what they'd discussed, he made it clear "bad things" weren't really going to be discussed, at least in public, saying "a lot of good things and things to talk about...trade, military, missiles, nuclear, China".

Then came the joint news conference. "And we get along in Syria too", Trump said.

Trump said that he again "addressed the issue of Russian interference in our elections" with the Russian leader during their meetings on Monday.

House Speaker Paul Ryan weighed in to say there's "no question" that Russian Federation interfered in the 2016 presidential election and "no moral equivalence" between the U.S. and Russian Federation.

Putin did not answer a question on whether he has collected compromising personal material on Trump and his family. He claimed Mr Obama "was informed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation about Russian Meddling, he said it couldn't happen, was no big deal, & did NOTHING about it".

In general, the Russian leader said, the talks with Mr Trump took place in an "open and businesslike atmosphere" and he characterised them as "successful and useful".

On the question of nuclear tensions on the Korean peninsula, Mr Putin praised the United States leader over efforts to resolve difficulties with North Korea.

Israel is deeply concerned about Iran's presence in Syria, where Iranian forces and proxies have been fighting on behalf of the Syrian government, which is also supported by Russian Federation.

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