Trump fails to rule out accepting Russian claim on Crimea

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US President Donald Trump has refused to rule out accepting Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region when he meets his Kremlin counterpart Vladimir Putin next month.

Trump is due to have his first one-on-one summit with Putin in Helsinki on 16 of next month. Talking to reporters in Washington yesterday, Trump refused to reaffirm the long-standing US opposition to Russia’s intervention in Ukraine.

Accepting that Crimea is never to return to Ukrainian control, would be a major concession to Russia, which is languishing under tough international trade sanctions over its actions.

Russia seized Crimea in 2014 after sending in troops, taking over key facilities, and staging a referendum deemed illegitimate by at least 100 countries in the United Nations.

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