Mueller report: Trump dismisses 'Russian hoax' in call with Putin


Friday's call between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin lasted almost an hour and a half and came at the White House's request, according to a statement from the Russian embassy in Washington.

Sanders did not say which arms control agreement they discussed, but the Russian state news agency Tass reported that they talked about the New START treaty, the last major arms-control treaty remaining between the U.S. and Russia.

She added that they were also in preliminary discussions about a potential new nuclear disarmament pact between Russian Federation, the United States, and China. In a readout, Moscow said Trump and Putin discussed "the current state and prospects for bilateral relations with an emphasis on economic cooperation".

Mueller's report concluded that Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election was "sweeping and systematic", and included a description of the extensive efforts Russia took to interfere in the 2016 election, including the 25 Russians indicted for that effort.

When another reporter pressed again on whether he warned Putin against future interference, Trump replied: "We didn't discuss that". "So we had a good conversation about several different things", Trump said.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders speaks with reporters outside the White House, Friday, May 3, 2019, in Washington. They spoke for a little over an hour, she added.

Trump also raised with Putin the issue of getting North Korea to dismantle its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programmes.

The call comes as President Trump continues to face fallout following Mueller's probe and amid growing calls for Attorney General William Barr to resign for his handling of the report.

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Pressed to explain why he did not tell Putin that during the call, she replied, before walking away, 'The president's been clear that no one needs to meddle in our election. Trump joined the Russian leader at a news conference in Helsinki last summer in publicly challenging the USA intelligence community's conclusion that the Kremlin directed the interference campaign, drawing condemnation from American lawmakers in both parties.

On Wednesday, Pompeo had a telephone conversation with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, telling him that Russia should "not interfere" in the Latin American country.

Sanders was asked if Putin had a message from Kim to give to Trump, but she did not answer.

"We talked about it and he smiled and said something in the sense that it began as a mountain and as a mouse ended".

"They had a very good discussion". 'But he knew that because he knew there was to no collusion whatsoever'.

Mr Trump continued to put forward his narrative that the investigation was "a witch-hunt".

The United States and most other Western countries no longer recognize Maduro as Venezuela's legitimate leader, having switched interim recognition to Juan Guaido, the president of Venezuela's democratically elected national assembly.