Just two days after the White House postponed plans to have President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia visit Washington in the fall, the Russian leader said on Friday that he had invited President Trump to visit him in Moscow.
So the situation is as follows:
- President Donald Trump is open to visiting Moscow — if he gets a formal invitation from Vladimir Putin, the White House said Friday.
- Russian President Putin said he’s game for a trip to Washington — but his answer came only after Trump retracted his invitation for a fall sit-down.
The awkward back and forth is the latest round of summit drama flowing from the two leaders’ controversial first meeting in Helsinki this month. It underscores Trump’s eagerness to forge a warmer relationship with Putin, though the Russian does not appear to share the urgency and Trump’s allies in Washington are watching with frustration.
But the possibility of a Trump trip to Moscow emerged Friday after Putin said he was ready to invite Trump — or to visit Washington if conditions are right.
“I understand very well what President Trump said: He has the wish to conduct further meetings,” Putin said while traveling in Johannesburg. “I am ready for this. We are ready to invite President Trump to Moscow. By the way, he has such an invitation, I told him of this. I am prepared to go to Washington, but, I repeat, if the appropriate conditions for work are created.”