Vienna May Host Trump-Putin Summit

Glen Norman
June 10, 2018

Xi said the award is the highest state honor given to foreigners, awarded to those who have made outstanding contributions, "promoting exchange and cooperation between China and the world, and safeguarding world peace", as quoted by Xinhua.

The Friendship Medal of the People's Republic of China was presented to Mr Putin personally by Chinese President Xi Jinping in a grand ceremony held at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Friday (June 8).

"No matter what fluctuations there are in the global situation, China and Russian Federation have always firmly taken the development of relations as a priority", Xi said at the start of talks Friday with Putin, Reuters reported.

Mr. Xi and Mr. Putin are "soulmates who want to make their countries great again", Alexander Gabuev, senior fellow at the Carnegie Moscow Center, told AFP.

"We need the president to be able to distinguish between our allies and adversaries, and to treat each accordingly", he said in a statement.

China is mired in tough negotiations with the United States to avoid a trade war, while Moscow has deep differences with Washington on multiple diplomatic fronts, including Syria and Ukraine.

Solidifying his solo status on the world stage, Trump also lashed out at longtime allies over their criticism of his trade policies.

As the economic globalization and regional economic integration deepen, the three countries should jointly pursue integrated, win-win development and set an example of cooperation among neighboring countries, said Xi. He called Putin his best honest friend and most respected in China.

The Wall Street Journal reported early in June that the White House was preparing for a potential summit between the two leaders, which a senior administration official called an "ongoing project" of Jon Hunstman, the USA ambassador to Russian Federation.

Mr. Putin's objectives are plain: to restore Russian Federation to global greatness at the expense of the United States and to divide Europe by weakening North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the European Union. "But he's also a very dependable man to work with". "If it doesn't happen, we come out even better", Trump wrote Friday on Twitter, before leaving the White House.

The US withdrawal, he said, "can further destabilize the situation" but Russian Federation is in favor of the "unconditional implementation" of the pact. "They are related to the pragmatic national interests of the United States", Putin said.

President Donald Trump said Russian Federation should be allowed back into the G8 bloc as he left the White House Friday for 24 hours of trade talks with allies where he intends to press his case that the USA loses through poor economic deals negotiated by his predecessors.

"Russia should be in this meeting".

"If there are to be any conversations about Russia's future in relation to this particular group, they have to change their ways, they have to change the route that they are taking and the sort of activity they are involved in", Mrs May said.

Mr. Putin told CGTN that the SCO had "small" objectives when it was founded two decades ago but that it was now evolving into a larger global force.

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