No deal yet on earlier meeting between Putin, Trump

The Kremlin and the White House confirmed that Putin and Trump agreed to hold regular dialogue and start preparations for a personal meeting. The G20 summit is scheduled for early July in Hamburg, Germany. So far there is nothing specific in this regard, " Peskov told the press on Monday. A painting by an artist in Lithuania of Trump and Putin kissing sparked attention in May a year ago.

"A meeting between the Russian and the United States president has been agreed on, intensive work on its agenda is underway, we intend to make the agenda positive", the Russian Senate speaker said.

Top White House officials have been reviewing over the weekend Flynn's contacts and whether he discussed the possibility of lifting USA sanctions on Russian Federation once Trump took office, which could potentially be in violation of a law banning private citizens from engaging in foreign policy.

The two sides recently had a phone conversation, that was assessed by many in Moscow and in Washington as a "good start", and a significant shift in dialogue.

"Both sides expressed their readiness to make active joint efforts to stabilize and develop Russia-US cooperation on a constructive, equitable and mutually beneficial basis, " as well as "build up partner cooperation" on a wide range of worldwide issues, according to a Kremlin statement following the phone discussion the two had on January 27. Yet, the new USA administration has lately been under pressure regarding the issue.

The new USA administration is under pressure over Russia however because Michael Flynn, Trump's national security adviser, is struggling to get past a controversy over a call he had with the Russian ambassador to the United States Sergei Kislyak before Trump took office.

A spokesman for Flynn walked back that denial last week, saying that while Flynn "had no recollection of discussing sanctions, he couldn't be certain that the topic never came up", according to the Post.