Trump says sanctions on Russian Federation will remain ‘as-is’

Lester Mason
August 1, 2018

Conte said "Italy is favourable to a dialogue with Russian Federation, but Italy also considers dialogue between the United States and Russian Federation fundamental".

Europe's political establishment will have all eyes Monday on the meeting in Washington DC between Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and US President Donald Trump.

The most obvious common ground between the two leaders is their hardline stances on immigration.

Trump - who has pursued a "zero tolerance" policy at the U.S. border, a crackdown that led to hundreds of children being separated from parents who crossed into the country from Mexico without papers - praised Conte's approach on the issue.

Conte meanwhile spoke of the Italian government's "innovative approach" to "try to resolve the phenomenon of immigration" which he said was "in line with the position of President Trump".

McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan reportedly thought they'd settled on an understanding with the president not to beat the shutdown drum ahead of November, but after the latest Twitter eruptions, a second round of discussions was arranged.

It has closed Italy's ports to migrants and turned back several ships carrying refugees rescued at sea, threatening the future of those operations. Conte has also accused the European Union of placing an unfair burden on Italy when it comes to handling asylum seekers.

President Donald Trump walks on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington Sunday
President Donald Trump walks on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington Sunday

"I agree very much what you're doing with respect to migration, illegal immigration and even legal immigration", Trump told Conte in the Oval Office.

He stressed that the "European Union now has a responsibility" to help Italy manage migration, while Trump said he hoped more European leaders would follow Conte's example of "bold leadership".

Trump is noting the USA trade deficit with Italy and says he's sure "we'll straighten that out pretty quickly".

According to Nick Ottens of the Atlantic Council, Trump "may not find the ally he expects" in Conte.

In particular, during the presidency of Trump, Russian diplomats were expelled from the country and the Consulates of the Russian Federation in San Francisco, California and Seattle, Washington, were closed. The threats came days after GOP leaders believed they had secured a pledge of Trump's patience on the budget.

Trump's standoff with Iran, and the sanctions that hurt Italian-Iranian commerce, are a big point of disagreement between the two countries.

Trump said he was willing to meet Iran's leaders without preconditions but did not say what Tehran had to do to have sanctions lifted.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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