Meeting Vladimir Putin was better than NATO summit: US President Donald Trump

The president's tweets came after receiving massive criticism in the United States, even from his own Republican Party.

Published: 18th July 2018 08:20 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th July 2018 08:20 AM   |  A+A-

US President Donald Trump (L) and Russian President Vladimir Putin reach to shake hands before a meeting in Helsinki (Photo | AFP)

By IANS

WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that his controversial meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin was even better than the annual NATO summit in Brussels, at which he demanded a greater contribution to defence funding by America's allies.

"While I had a great meeting with NATO, raising vast amounts of money, I had an even better meeting with Vladimir Putin of Russia," Trump said on his Twitter account.

"Sadly, it is not being reported that way - the Fake News is going Crazy!" he added with his usual disparaging reference to media that criticize his government.

The president's tweets came after receiving massive criticism in the United States, even from his own Republican Party, for his questionable meeting with Putin this Monday in Helsinki.

In a joint press release with Putin, Trump put in doubt the conclusions of US intelligence services that the Kremlin had interfered in the 2016 presidential election to benefit him and undermine the chances of his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton.

READ| Helsinki Summit: Celebrities slam Donald Trump for behaving 'like a little fanboy' in front of Putin

For several months the CIA and FBI intelligence agencies have said they have proof that Russia tried to interfere in the election, though they dismiss the possibility that it could have influenced the final result, which showed Trump defeating Clinton and taking over the White House.

Despite those reports, Trump told a press conference Tuesday that he didn't see "any reason" why Russia would have wanted to meddle in the American electoral process, and said that "President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial" and had convinced him of his innocence during their summit in Helsinki.

Trump's support of Putin has set off an endless wave of condemnation in the US, including that of former

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