When it comes to President Trump exchanging pleasantries with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Group of 20 (G-20) summit earlier this month, the word “meeting” has taken on new meaning.
In an interview released on Friday, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told NBC News that the two world leaders likely “met” and spoke with each other several times during the G20 summit in Germany earlier this month.
“They might have met even much more than just three times,” Lavrov said, but even as anchor Keir Simmons grilled him on the “meetings”, he noted that the encounters were of no importance.
“When you are bought by your parents to a kindergarten do you mix with the people who are waiting in the same room to start going to a classroom?” he asked.
There was informal chatting before Trump and Putin sat down for a two-hour-plus bilateral meeting with Lavrov, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and a pair of translators. To the media, this likely counts as two “meetings”.
Trump later spoke with Putin for 15 minutes at a dinner for G-20 leaders and their spouses, according to Trump, although the media is clocking this “meeting” as lasting “roughly an hour,” according to a report in The Hill. Media sources are calling this after-dinner chat an “undisclosed meeting”, since no one talked about it until just a few days ago.
“After the dinner was over…I was not there…President Trump apparently went to pick up his wife and spent some minutes with President Putin…so what?” Lavrov said.
— NBC News (@NBCNews) July 21, 2017
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