Trump, Putin meet in Helsinki, ERR liveblogged event

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin shake hands briefly at the initial meet in front of the cameras.
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin shake hands briefly at the initial meet in front of the cameras. Source: Reuters/Scanpix

The Helsinki summit where US President Donald Trump is meeting his Russian counterpart Vladmir Putin, is now underway in the Finnish Capital.

The summit began at the Presidential Palace in central Helsinki on Monday afternon where both leaders arrived, Mr. Putin arriving late (the scheduled meeting had been put back as a result of the Russian leader's plane landing an hour later than planned).

Donald Trump had already arrived with his wife Melania and were greeted and shown round the Palace by Finnish President Sauli Niinistö and his wife Jenni Haukio.

After Mr. Putin arrived and the initial sit down and chat for the cameras was over, during which Mr. Trump praised Russia's hosting of the recent football world cup finals, TV analysts noted the two leaders' choice of bringing their own simultaneous interpreter rather than having one single interpreter. The brevity of the two men's initial handshake was also picked up, and speculation was aired on what issues would be discussed and which (such as the Crimea, the Syrian War and alleged interference in the 2016 US Presidential election on the part of Russia) might be quietly left to one side.

The two leaders then went to engage in one-on-one discussions away from the cameras and with only interpreters present.

ERR is live blogging the summit (in Estonian).

Donald Trump arrived in Helsinki on Sunday night in Air Force One; his back up Boeing plane and military transport plane are stationed at Tallinn Airport for the duration of the visit.

This year's summit in some ways echoes the 1990 Helsinki Summit when George H.W. Bush of the US met Mikhail Gorbachev, at the time still leader of the Soviet Union in September of that year. Topics on the table at that summit included the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait earlier that summer.

Editor: Andrew Whyte

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