US President Donald Trump is expected to arrive in Helsinki on Sunday 15 July – one day before his planned face-to-face encounter with Russian President Vladimir Putin on 16 July, according to daily Helsingin Sanomat.
The paper wrote Thursday that following his arrival in Helsinki on Sunday, Trump will hold meetings at the US Embassy the same evening. The paper reported that on Monday, Trump will first meet with host President Sauli Niinistö before his sit-down with Putin, following which their bilateral talks will continue through lunch. HS said that current information indicates that Trump will leave Helsinki on Monday evening.
The daily previously wrote that the meeting between would meet at the Presidential Palace in downtown Helsinki. HS cited US government representatives as its source.
Finlandia Hall to host media
However the President’s office told Yle on Thursday that it could not confirm any details about the location of the meeting. Finnish news agency STT reported meanwhile that the Finnish Foreign Ministry declined to comment on the matter. The US Embassy in Helsinki also would not offer any confirmation of a location, according to the embassy’s head of public affairs, T.J. Grubisha.
Finlandia Hall in downtown Helsinki will serve as the international press centre for the meetings and is expected to host around two thousand journalists from news outlets around the world.
Trump’s one-night stay in Finland is likely to require extensive security arrangements.
Presidents to meet alone for one-on-one session
Meanwhile according to news agency Reuters, the US government said that the US and Russian heads will likely discuss disarmament and strategic balance, including alleged violations on the use of mid-range nuclear missiles. Russia has denied breaching international agreements on the issue.
US Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman told reporters in a conference call that Trump still holds Russia responsible for its “bad deeds”.
Trump will first meet Putin alone for a one-on-one session, after which the meeting is to continue with a larger delegation.