A Kremlin spokesman has confirmed today that a meeting is being set up for President Donald Trump to meet his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of an economic summit in Vietnam
"Right now the time of the meeting is being agreed," presidential aide, Mr Yuri Ushakov, told Russian news agencies.
Mr Ushakov said President Putin had discussed preparations for the summit with members of the presidential Security Council and that it would be “entirely logical” for the presidents of the US and Russia to discuss geopolitical issues.
Presidents Trump and Putin are both attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Corporation (APEC) leaders' meeting which starts in Danang, Vietnam on Friday.
The first meeting between the two leaders was in July of this year at the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany. However, bilateral relations have gone downhill since then with both the US Congress imposing further sanctions on Russia whilst Moscow retaliated by limiting the number of American diplomats in their country and closing various diplomatic offices.
According to members of President Putin’s inner circle, the political foes of President Trump are to blame for the new US President not fulfilling his campaign promise to forge a better relationship with Russia so far.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who already arrived in Vietnam, repeated a similar phrase: “We may reach agreements, but regrettably they immediately become an element of internal political fighting, internal political games aimed to make President Trump’s life and activities as difficult as possible.”
His American counterpart Mr Rex Tillerson questioned whether there would be enough to talk about: "The question is whether we've got sufficient substance for a more formal meeting and we're working with the Russians, as you know, on a number of difficult areas.
"We're in contact with them, and the view is that the two leaders are going to meet if there's something sufficiently substantive to talk about that would warrant a formal meeting."