Trump and United States delegation to bring up election meddling with Putin

Putin and Trump likely to discuss southern Syria, says Lavrov

A USA congressional delegation is meeting with senior Russian officials in St. Petersburg amid preparations for a summit between the nations' presidents.

"We are competitors, but we don't necessarily need to be adversaries", said Shelby, a Republican senator from Alabama, in televised comments.

"We recognize that the world is better off, I believe, if Russia and the USA have fewer tensions, get along a little better, maybe put aside some differences", Senator Richard Shelby said during Tuesday's meeting with Lavrov at the Russian foreign ministry. He's expected to travel to Helsinki on July 15th and hold a one-on-one meeting with Putin, followed by a larger meeting with aides and a working lunch the next day.

Trump told reporters last week he would press Putin on election meddling and discuss Syria and Ukraine during their meeting in Helsinki. Russian Federation is now hosting this year's tournament.

Trump has recently signaled doubts about that US policy and said he wouldn't rule out the possibility of recognizing Crimea as part of Russian Federation.

He said the Kremlin was "very satisfied" that the senators were visiting Russian Federation.

More news: A guide to the quarter-final ties

The United States needs to go into the summit with Russia later this month with "eyes wide open" and be willing to hold the Kremlin responsible for its involvement in a new form of warfare, U.S. Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman Jr. said. Kislyak is now a member of Russia's upper house of parliament.

"We are convinced that inter-parliamentary links are one of the most important factors in bilateral ties", he told reporters.

But Ms Hutchinson said that the summit would show Nato's "unity and strength", underlying that all 29 members would be protected by the body.

Ms Hutchinson said that 16 member countries are on track to hit the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation target of spending 2 per cent of GDP on defence, framing the change as a victory for Mr Trump's agenda.

Experts have warned that the meeting could have potentially massive consequences, as Putin has been described as a "very disciplined negotiator" who may be able to extract major concessions from Trump.

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