Putin to start with meeting Bolton
Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold a meeting with US National Security Adviser John Bolton in the Kremlin, Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
"The president will receive Bolton in the Kremlin, this discussion will take place today," Peskov said, recalling that the Security Adviser is scheduled to hold several meetings in Moscow today, including with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Kremlin Aide Yuri Ushakov and top officials of the Security Council.
According to Peskov, Moscow intends to discuss "the sad state" of Russia-US bilateral relations and international issues.
"In our bilateral relations, we cannot boast of intense bilateral contacts, let alone high-level ones, that’s why certainly, such contacts are used for exchanging views on key global issues - they are rather clear and evident," TASS cited him as saying.
The Kremlin spokesman declined to speak about the agenda for the meeting and if this is a preparation for bilateral talks between Putin and US President Donald Trump. "Let’s wait for this meeting. After this Bolton’s meeting with Putin we will ask Ushakov to briefly inform the reporters," Peskov said.
The President of the National Strategy Institute, Mikhail Remizov, speaking with the correspondent of Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that Donald Trump chose John Bolton as the first US negotiator in the Kremlin because of his principled pro-American stance, which would allow the US president to avoid further accusations of ties with Russia. "Bolton is a supporter of unilateral American hegemony, a unipolar world and the priority of US law over international law. The focus on restraining Russia is one of the consequences of these beliefs, it's not Bolton's personal mania, he is not a Russophobe, but an adherent of global American domination. Such a reputation, according to Trump, makes him a successful negotiator with Russia," he said.
"Trump can't afford to sent a man to Russia, who can be blamed for pro-Russian sympathies. With his radical position Bolton will be additional insurance for Trump from accusations of playing up to Moscow. As for the adviser's meeting with the Russian president, it is difficult to say in what Moscow means by that. Perhaps it was just a condition from the US to prepare a meeting of the presidents in Vienna. In general, this is quite normal practice for the Kremlin - it is not the first meeting of the Russian president with US officials of lower level," Mikhail Remizov added.
The director of the Center for Political Information, Alexei Mukhin, also stressed that for Trump Bolton is the most convenient person for preliminary negotiations in Moscow. "In fact, John Bolton's anti-Russian statements are only part of his views, he is an intelligent and experienced politician, who was sent by the US president to the Kremlin in order to effectively negotiate the preparation for Vladimir Putin's forthcoming meeting with Donald Trump. I am sure that whatever views Bolton has, they will not affect the ultimate goal of his visit, and it will be achieved," he said.