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Russian media praise Trump-Putin summit success

Russian media say progress was made at the Trump-Putin summit in Helsinki, sharply contrasting American media outlets' critical take on what transpired.

A special edition of the All Points North podcast breaks down the issues and fallout from the summit with special guest Charly Salonius-Pasternak. Audio: Yle News

Russian news organisations have applauded Vladimir Putin's summit with Donald Trump in Helsinki, lauding it as a diplomatic triumph for the ex-KGB agent.

The Russian media establishment’s view sharply contrasts that of US media outlets, which have slammed the summit as disastrous for US foreign policy, as Donald Trump sided with Putin's view that Russia did not interfere in the 2016 presidential election.

Russian president Vladimir Putin called Donald Trump a competent leader, with headlines calling out that: 'good results were reached,' 'Trump considers Putin a strong leader,' and that 'Russian annexation of Crimea is not off the table.'

Russian daily Kommersant did, however, point out that the two leaders did not produce any kind of public statement. Russian news agency Tass writes that although the presidents seemed to get along, Trump is a prisoner of his own domestic politics, which is why the meeting won’t really affect US-Russian relations.

Putin: Trump is a good leader

In an exclusive interview with the Kremlin's go-to news outlet, Pervy Canal or Channel One, Putin said economic relations and the Syrian war came up in the meeting with Trump, and that Russia and the US are on track to reaching a solution of some kind in the war-torn state.

Ruutukaappaus Venäjän ykköskanavan uutislähetyksestä.
A screenshot of Russia's Channel One news. Image: Yle Uutisgrafiikka, lähde: Venäjän Ykköskanava

In his version of events, Putin said any expectations he had for the meeting were surpassed as discussions with Trump progressed in a convivial spirit. Putin told the broadcaster that Trump was both a competent president and interesting discussion partner.

"Many people just see him as a businessman, but he’s a politician—mainly because of his ability to listen to what the people want,” a smiling and confident Putin told the reporter.

With regard to business links between the two superpowers, Putin spotlighted a high-level business working group that the presidents had brainstormed during their one-on-one.

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