What Trump and Putin agreed to in Helsinki
The only agreement reached between President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland, on Monday was to meet again later this year, a National Security Council official tells CBS News' "Face the Nation" host Margaret Brennan.
White House press secretary Sarah Sanders announced Thursday on Twitter that Mr. Trump has asked national security adviser John Bolton to invite Putin to Washington this fall. The news seemed to surprise even Mr. Trump's own director of national intelligence.
"President Trump asked Ambassador Bolton today to invite President Putin to Washington in the Fall to follow up on and review the two sides' progress on the issues they discussed in Helsinki," the NSC official told Brennan.
Exactly what Mr. Trump and Putin discussed, and what agreement or agreements they reached, has been the topic of much discussion and confusion. Only one other American, State Department translator Marina Gross, was in the room with the American and Russian presidents, and the White House has offered few details about what was discussed.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Voice of America this week that the Russians made proposals on "a number of things" in Helsinki. The White House did ultimately object to one proposal from Putin to hand over two Americans, including former U.S. Ambassador to Moscow Mike McFaul, for questioning.
On Tuesday, Russia suggested there had been more than one agreement forged by two leaders and even said it was ready to implement agreements reached by Mr. Trump and Putin. "The Russian Defense Ministry is ready for practical implementation of the agreements in the sphere of international security reached by Russian and US Presidents, Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump, at their Monday's summit in Helsinki," the Russian embassy tweeted.
Back in March, the NSC had discussed the possibility of inviting Putin to Washington.
Separately, a senior administration official told Brennan that Mr. Trump is telling his team that he held a firm line with Putin regarding Syria, and said U.S. troops will not leave until Iran leaves. That indefinite timeline contradicts Mr. Trump's earlier stated desire to draw down the roughly 2,000 American troops there.
As CBS News has previously reported, Mr. Trump said he wanted them withdrawn within six months.
Gen. Joseph Leonard Votel of U.S. Central Command said Thursday he has received no new orders regarding Syria.
Russia is promising to keep Iran away from Israel's borders, but as Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats said Thursday there is reason to doubt whether they can deliver on that. Coats appeared surprised Thursday when, as he sat on stage at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado, NBC's Andrew Mitchell announced the White House was inviting Putin to Washington this fall. "That's going to be special," he said, after expressing shock at the news.
Mr. Trump hinted at a second meeting with Putin on Twitter Thursday morning, saying he looks forward to implementing the things they already discussed in Helsinki.
"The Summit with Russia was a great success, except with the real enemy of the people, the Fake News Media," Mr. Trump tweeted Thursday morning. "I look forward to our second meeting so that we can start implementing some of the many things discussed, including stopping terrorism, security for Israel, nuclear............proliferation, cyber attacks, trade, Ukraine, Middle East peace, North Korea and more. There are many answers, some easy and some hard, to these problems...but they can ALL be solved!"
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