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Media focus on Trump-Putin meeting at G20 aims to harm US president — diplomat

July 19, 20:53 UTC+3 MOSCOW

"Each of the leaders is free to socialize as he or she views appropriate," Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said

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MOSCOW, July 19. /TASS/. Media reports on an alleged undisclosed meeting of Russian and US Presidents Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump at the G20 summit in Hamburg have the goal of undermining the authority of US head of state, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said in a televised interview with Rossiya’24 channel on Wednesday.

"Those who are putting the question in this way are working to undermine President Trump’s authority and create additional troubles for him," Ryabkov said, when asked whether the US president had broken a diplomatic protocol and "betrayed his own country" by meeting with Putin at the G20 summit.

"Apart from officially approved formats with delegation members’ attendance, there is informal communication," he said. "Each of the leaders is free to socialize as he or she views appropriate. There are dozens of such contacts which are not recorded anywhere or anyhow."

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