Yesterday’s Sunday Times of London reports that Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin have agreed to meet within a few weeks in Reykjavik, Iceland, to take the first steps on improving relations between the two countries. Both Sean Spicer, Trump’s press secretary, and Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, quickly denied the report. Spicer tweeted: “100 percent false.” Peskov told RIA news agency that “So far there have been no talks about any meeting.”
The Russian Embassy in London hit the nail on the head, telling RIA that the Sunday Times story was “an attempt by the Britons to undermine Donald Trump’s Presidency. Apparently, they will continue this right till the last moment.”
In its coverage of the Sunday Times account, the U.K. Guardian pretty much confirmed that the British are doing everything in their power to torpedo any U.S.-Russian rapprochement under Trump: The news [of a Trump-Putin meeting] is unlikely to be welcomed by senior figures in the British government, who fear a deepening relationship between the U.S. and Russia under Trump risks leaving Britain out in the cold. It is understood Downing Street expects Theresa May to visit Trump at the White House in the second half of February. Britain has called for sanctions against Moscow over Putin’s aggression in Ukraine and Syria. It is understood that British intelligence has sought reassurance from the CIA that U.K. agents in Russia will be protected when intelligence is shared, the Times reported.
“A British intelligence source with extensive transatlantic experience said U.S. spies had labelled Trump and his advisors’ links to the Kremlin problematic. ‘Until we have established whether Trump and senior members of his team can be trusted, we’re going to hold back,’ the source told the Times. ‘Putting it bluntly, we can’t risk betraying sources and methods to the Russians.'”