Washington, Aug 20: A little-known foreign policy advisor of Donald Trump had praised Russian President Vladimir Putin during a meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi had with US experts and think tanks here in June, according to a media report.
Such a meeting between Modi and top American foreign policy experts and think tanks representing both the Clinton and Trump Campaigns was held at the Blair House when the Prime Minister visited Washington DC in June. According to The Washington Post, which reported about this of-the-record meeting earlier this month, such a remark by a US foreign policy expert in a meeting with a foreign leader stunned those present at the Blair House.
"In early June, a little-known adviser to Donald Trump stunned a gathering of high-powered Washington foreign policy experts meeting with the visiting prime minister of India, going off topic with effusive praise for Russian President Vladimir Putin and Trump," the daily said.
"The adviser, Carter Page, hailed Putin as stronger and more reliable than President (Barack) Obama, according to three people who were present at the closed-door meeting at Blair House - and then touted the positive effect a Trump presidency would have on US-Russia relations," it said.
A month later, Page dumbfounded foreign policy experts again by giving another speech harshly critical of US policy - this time in Moscow, the daily said.
The Clinton Campaign on Friday used 'The Post' story to allege that members of the Trump campaign have connections with the Putin regime in Russia. "Carter Page, Trump's pro-Putin foreign policy adviser, built his career on deals with Russia's state owned gas company, Gazprom, and travelled to Moscow just last month," the Clinton Campaign alleged in a lengthy statement issued after the Trump Campaign chairman Paul Manafort resigned amid reports of his alleged links with pro-Russia elements in Ukraine.