Russian Ambassador Affirms No ‘Secret Deals’ Struck between Putin, Trump in Helsinki

MOSCOW - No secret agreements were reached at the bilateral US-Russian presidential summit in the Finnish capital of Helsinki, Russian President Vladimir Putin clarified everything openly, Russian Ambassador to the US Anatoly Antonov told reporters at a press briefing in the Russian Foreign Ministry on Wednesday.

"Russian President Vladimir Putin told [reporters] everything. There were no secret agreements," he affirmed. "They [agreements] were announced clearly. There were talks about Syria and Ukraine, experts were instructed to work on that area."

 "I liked the meeting very much, the conversation was substantive and serious," the ambassador noted. "I saw US President Donald Trump listening to the Russian president. That doesn’t mean, however, that President Trump agreed with everything. A huge rift in understanding bilateral and global issues has become a bit smaller."

Antonov also pointed out that the questions asked by US reporters at the summit were unconstructive and aimed at "creating an uncomfortable situation for Donald Trump."

The diplomat noted it was necessary to wait for "the toxic dust of Russia bashing in Washington" to settle. "Let’s see to what extent the US will be ready to implement the verbal understandings reached in Helsinki," he noted.

On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Donald Trump held their first full-fledged meeting in Helsinki. The two heads of state held a one-on-one meeting that lasted for slightlyover two hours. Later, delegation members joined the two presidents for a larger working luncheon. The Russian side was comprised of Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov and Presidential Aide Yuri Ushakov. The US delegation included Secretary of State Michael Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton. The expanded bilateral session lasted about two hours.