Trump playfully tells Putin, "don't meddle in the election"
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Shortly before the leaders spoke to reports – and before the U.S. pool was brought in – Mr. Trump referred to the press contingent as "fake news," and congratulated himself for promoting the term.
"I think there might be some media out there. What do you think?" Mr. Trump was seen saying to state TV reporters before the U.S. reporters were admitted.
"Fake news," Mr. Trump said as the pool entered. "Great term, isn't it? You don't have that. We have it. You don't have it," he said.
"Yes, we have it too," Putin appeared to reply in English. "Same."
Putin later referred to the meeting as a "great opportunity to follow up on Helsinki" -- the July 2018 Trump-Putin summit during which the U.S. president appeared to accept Putin's insistence that Russia had not interfered in U.S. politics. The Friday meeting was the first formal one between Mr. Trump and Putin since Helsinki.
The meeting lasted about an hour, and came amid escalating tensions between the U.S. and Iran, which has been backed by Moscow in the standoff.
In the room with the two presidents were various Russian and U.S. officials including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, National Security Advisor John Bolton, acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner.
On Tuesday, Mr. Trump threatened the "obliteration" of parts of Iran if it attacks anything belonging to the U.S. Mr. Trump authorized new sanctions against Iran's supreme leader and a cyberattack on Iran after Iran shot down a U.S. drone last week.
"Iran's very ignorant and insulting statement, put out today, only shows that they do not understand reality," Mr. Trump tweeted Tuesday morning. "Any attack by Iran on anything American will be met with great and overwhelming force. In some areas, overwhelming will mean obliteration."
A senior administration official told CBS News negotiating a new arms control agreement with Russia could be a topic of discussion. Mr. Trump told reporters Wednesday that what he talks about with Putin is "none of your business."
The official described plans to update and expand limits on nuclear weapons as a "high priority," but that when it comes to Mr. Trump, it is impossible to "pretend to know what is in his mind."
Senior administration officials also said Mr. Trump hoped to discuss including China as a party to any new agreement. Beijing has expressed zero interest in such a deal, but these aides told CBS News the president might still raise the issue with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Mr. Trump has been criticized for his relationship with Putin, which Democrats have characterized as too friendly. The president made headlines when he told ABC News he would probably take a look at information from foreign governments that could hurt his opponents as he seeks re-election.
Special counsel Robert Mueller concluded in his report that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to benefit Mr. Trump's campaign, although he could not establish that campaign officials conspired with Moscow to influence the election. Mr. Trump has repeatedly expressed doubt about whether Russia interfered in the election and insisted there was no collusion between his campaign and Russia.
In February, Mr. Trump argued that he has been "tougher on Russia than any president" in an interview with "Face the Nation."
Mr. Trump said he will meet with Xi Saturday, among other world leaders. A trade deal with China has yet to come to fruition, and Mr. Trump tweeted that he would discuss sanctions with Indian President Narendra Modi, as well.
Original content can be located at CBS News