President Trump meets with Russian President Putin in Helsinki (14 images)
President Donald Trump met with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, Finland, on Monday. The two leaders held a private meeting for two hours to discuss a variety of subjects including election meddling, the war in Syria and the North Korean threat. After their meeting the leaders conducted a joint press conference. This was the first U.S.-Russian summit in eight years. The last, between former Presidents Barack Obama and Dmitry Medvedev, was held in Prague, Czech Republic, on April 8, 2010. Photos by David Silpa/UPI
President Donald Trump (L) receives a soccer ball from Russian President Vladimir Putin in honor of Russia's successful hosting of the World Cup tournament this year and the United States picking up hosting duties in 2026 during a joint press conference.
Trump's remarks at the news conference were met by some with strong criticism -- particularly for slamming Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation and appearing to back Putin's denial that Moscow did not interfere in the 2016 U.S. election. "He just said it's not Russia," Trump said. "I will say this. I don't see any reason why it would be."
Multiple members of Trump's own government and the entire U.S. intelligence community have already concluded that Russia did indeed attempt to sway the vote in Trump's favor. "I have great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today," Trump said Monday.