Trump talks tough on Russia before meeting with Putin

Posted: Updated:
UPPER BROOKVILLE -

While in Warsaw ahead of the G-20 Summit in Germany, President Donald Trump acknowledged, to a certain extent, what the FBI and other U.S. intelligence agencies have already confirmed – that Russia did indeed meddle in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

"I think it was Russia, but I think it was probably other people and or countries, and I see nothing wrong with that statement," said the president. 

He also addressed a crowd of supporters in Warsaw where he re-asserted U.S. commitment to defending NATO member nations from Russian aggression.

"We urge Russia to cease its destabilizing activities in Ukraine and elsewhere, and its support for hostile regimes including Syria and Iran," said President Trump. 

Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin are scheduled to meet during the G-20 Summit, where the topic of Upper Brookville's now shuttered Russian compound may come up. 

Russian diplomats haven't been to their Upper Brookville compound since December, when President Barack Obama expelled them in retaliation for election interference. A Putin adviser is calling on President Trump to allow the Russians to return, but Upper Brookville Mayor Elliot Conway says two of the world's most powerful men probably have more important issues to discuss. 

"The Norwich house…is a very small pawn in a very complicated chess game," says Conway. 

Still, Sen. Charles Schumer say if the topic does come up in bilateral talks, President Trump should not give the compound back to the Russians yet. 

"Putin's a bully. You stand up to him, he backs off. You act weak, he takes more. I would not give them back this compound until we got something in return," says Sen. Schumer. 

Sen. Schumer says it's important for President Trump to have a strong showing in his meeting with Putin, especially as it relates to election meddling. If he doesn't, Schumer says the Russians will do it again, adding "Who knows what side they'll be on."
 

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