WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on meeting between President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin (all times EDT):
The spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin is disputing the characterization of a previously undisclosed conversation between Putin and President Donald Trump as secret.
The White House confirmed Tuesday that Trump and Putin spoke to each other at dinner connected with the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, this month. The conversation came after Putin and Trump held formal talks of more than two hours.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov says, "The use of such definitions as a 'secret' or 'undisclosed' meeting raises eyebrows and causes confusion." Peskov was quoted by Russian news agencies as saying the Trump-Putin discussions "were neither secret nor undisclosed meetings. It is absurd to claim this."
U.S. officials say President Donald Trump's embrace of Russia is sparking concern among members of his national security and foreign policy team. They are said to be concerned about his previously undisclosed dinner conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Group of 20 meetings in Germany last month.
The White House confirms the conversation took place. Officially, Washington and Moscow are downplaying the reports. A spokesman for the National Security Council says it was a casual chat between the two leaders that shouldn't be described as a "meeting." A Russian lawmaker describes it as "a secret conversation that didn't happen."
The chat between the two leaders is said to have involved Russia's translator but not one from the U.S. U.S. officials say they are concerned about the president's tendency to shun the usual protocols for such meetings. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak about the meeting on the record.
Chancellor Angela Merkel's spokesman says the point of a dinner at the Group of 20 summit was to facilitate informal contacts, and the German leader wasn't "surprised or confused" by anything that happened.
The White House confirmed Tuesday that President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin had a second, previously undisclosed conversation at the summit in Hamburg on July 7, this one at an evening dinner following a concert.
A foreign affairs columnist who says he spoke with two people who were there said attendees described the meeting as startling.
Merkel spokesman Steffen Seibert wouldn't comment Wednesday on specific conversations but said the dinner "did, exactly as hoped, produce a lively exchange" between many participants. He said "the chancellor, in any case, was not surprised or confused by anything."
A senior Russian lawmaker is dismissing media reports of an undisclosed conversation between Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Donald Trump as sensationalist.
The White House spokesman Sean Spicer confirmed on Wednesday that Trump and Putin spoke at a dinner for world leaders and their spouses at the Group of 20 summit in Hamburg, Germany. Trump defended the dinner in a pair of angry tweets late Tuesday, saying it had been on his public schedule.
Alexei Pushkov, chairman of the information policy at the upper house of Russian parliament, on Wednesday lashed out at U.S. media for seeking details of "a secret conversation that didn't happen."
"They're sick," Pushkov said.
President Donald Trump had another, previously undisclosed conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin at a summit in Germany this month.
White House spokesman Sean Spicer and National Security Council spokesman Michael Anton confirmed that Trump and Putin spoke at a dinner for world leaders and their spouses at the Group of 20 summit in Hamburg, Germany.
The conversation came hours after Trump and Putin's first official face-to-face meeting on July 7, which was originally scheduled to last just half an hour but stretched on for more than two. The two world leaders were also captured on video shaking hands and exchanging a few words after they arrived at the G-20 summit of industrialized and developing nations earlier that day.
Anton would not specify the duration of the conversation. But he said the discussion was casual and should not be characterized as a "meeting" or even a less formal, but official, "pull-aside."