NEW YORK: Besides their ‘overtime’ bilateral meeting at the G20 Summit, President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, spoke for a second time on the same day.
"There was a couples-only social dinner at the G20. Toward the end, the President spoke to Putin at the dinner. No staff or Cabinet were at the dinner at all, for any of the countries,” National Security Council spokesman Michael Anton told CNN of the previously undisclosed meeting.
Anton further informed that Trump and Putin did not go to a separate room for their conversation, but remained in the main room where the dinner was being hosted.
Reporters traveling with the White House were not informed about the second meeting, and there also was no formal readout of the chat.
The development was first reported by Ian Bremmer, president of the Eurasia Group think tank.
Trump and Putin sat at opposite ends of a long table at the G20 dinner. Putin was seated next to first lady Melania Trump during the dinner, with a translator between them.
President Trump had called on Putin to discuss the prevailing situation of Syria, in their first face-to-face meeting.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson informed the media persons before departing for the G20 summit that Russia has been given the major role to solve Syrian crisis and decide the fate of Syrian President Bashar al -Assad.
The United States and Russia have already achieved progress in establishing de-confliction zones in Syria that have prevented mutual collateral damage.
"The United States is prepared to explore the possibility of establishing with Russia joint mechanisms for ensuring stability, including no-fly zones, on the ground ceasefire observers, and coordinated delivery of humanitarian assistance. If our two countries work together to establish stability on the ground, it will lay a foundation for progress on the settlement of Syria's political future," Tillerson stated.