Trump Says He'll Decide on Flight to G-20 Whether to Meet Putin

(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump said he will get a full report on Russia during his flight to Buenos Aires for the Group of 20 summit to determine whether he will honor his scheduled meeting with Vladimir Putin later this week.

Trump made the comments Thursday as he departed the White House for the G-20 summit, where he’ll hold a series of bilateral meetings with global leaders.

Tensions between Trump and Putin have risen ahead of their first one-on-one meeting since July after Russian warships fired on and seized three Ukrainian vessels in the Kerch Strait near Crimea on Sunday. The clash raised pressure on Trump to confront Putin over Russian efforts to expand its regional influence.

Trump earlier this week threatened to call off the meeting over the incident. The Kremlin, in response, said the U.S. needs the talks as much as Russia does.

The two presidents are expected to focus on bilateral relations and strategic stability, Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov told reporters at a briefing Wednesday. They will likely discuss security issues such as the conflict with Ukraine, Iran’s influence in the Middle East, the ongoing civil war in Syria, sanctions against North Korea, and the future of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.

The U.S. has said it will withdraw from the treaty, alleging Russia has violated the pact by developing a new cruise missile.

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