President Trump is getting prepared for his first meeting with President Putin of the Russian Federation today which will take place in Germany at the G20 Summit. He even tweeted an optimistic message regarding his upcoming agenda:
The two are meeting after they have both openly criticized each other this week. While Trump was visiting Poland yesterday, he denounced Russia’s actions not once, but twice, calling for Moscow to stop the “destabilizing” behavior regarding the Ukraine. According to the BBC, Moscow has since disagreed with Trump and rejected his pleas.
In addition, Putin wrote an article that was published on Thursday in a German newspaper that criticized the practice of sanctions, something the United States has implicated on Russia for several years. President Putin stated:
“We are facing several major challenges. The old economic models have all but exhausted their possibilities. Protectionism is becoming the norm, while unilateral, politically motivated restrictions on trade and investment, as well as technology transfer, are nothing but masked protectionism. We believe that these sanctions are not only doomed to fail, but also run counter to the G20 principles of cooperation in the interests of all countries.”
So, in light of the criticism against each other, what will happen at the G20 Summit when Trump and Putin meet? Some eyes will be on the two expecting a fight to break lose, but not much is actually likely to happen. They will probably meet each other in an awkward manner (which is expected at these types of events) and then go about their business during the Summit. There won’t be much time for the two to discuss the Ukraine and Putin’s position on the matter, which will ultimately lead to the continuation of sanctions. Hopefully at a later date though, the two can meet by themselves to come up with a solution that promotes peace between all nations involved. This won’t be an easy task though, as views on Russia in the United States remain negative among a sizable chunk of the population.
Lastly, President Trump also called for Russia yesterday to “fight against common enemies and in defense of civilization itself.” We may get to hear Putin’s response to this reasonable plea during the Summit and perhaps get a confirmation that Russia will stay on the side of good and continue the fight against terrorism.