Lavrov to Pompeo: Free Maria Butina arrested on fabricated spy charges

Donald Trump

Donald Trump is reportedly growing frustrated at the pace of negotiations with North Korea

In the days since the summit, Trump has faced criticism from officials on both sides of the political aisle over his handling of Putin and Russian Federation, which intelligence officials say meddled in the 2016 presidential election.

"I don't know what happened in that meeting", Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats said.

"Russia is closely examining this request and is seeking additional information on every single case of "illegal" transfer of petroleum to the DPRK claimed by the U.S.", Russia's United Nations mission said in an e-mail to council members.

Trump has since offered differing answers to the same question.

Sergei Lavrov made the comments about Maria Butina in a phone call to the U.S. secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, that was aimed at improving bilateral relations, the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement in the wake of the recent summit in Helsinki.

The widely publicized interview took place Thursday at the Aspen Security Forum.

Later, Trump tweeted that he has "great confidence" in USA intelligence agencies but stressed the need to build strong relations between the nuclear powers.

"In the old days they would call it diplomacy".

Haley called on America's "friends" to stop doing business under the cloak of darkness, saying that the intelligence community has produced photographic evidence of at least 89 violations in global waters.

Donald Trump
Donald Trump held a landmark summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore in June

Trump also said he misspoke in Helsinki.

He clarified it a day later, claiming he should have said he didn't see any reason why it "wouldn't" be Russian Federation that meddled. He reiterated there had been no collusion between his campaign and Moscow, an allegation that has dogged his presidency from the start.

"North Korea gave no response", Rep. Roh Hoe-chan, a South Korean lawmaker and the floor leader of the minor opposition Justice Party, reportedly told Korean reporters in Washington, DC, on Thursday, according to Korean news agency Yonhap.

The statement Saturday from Coats, more than 48 hours after the initial interview, capped a week of public walk backs by the Trump administration relating to Russian Federation.

Trump appeared to answer, "No".

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, White House press secretary. Speaking with CNBC, Trump later characterized (and distorted) the exchange as "fools from the media saying, 'Why didn't you stand there, look him in the face, walk over to him, and start shouting at him?' I said, 'Are these people insane?"

Russian Federation has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.

He did, however, tell CBS News this week that he holds Vladimir Putin responsible for election meddling.

"Well I would, because he's in charge of the country".

Trump Inviting Putin to Washington This Fall
Yet White House spokesperson Sarah Sanders said Wednesday that that was "something that would go through the State Department". The notion that President Trump would invite a tyrant to Washington is beyond belief.

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