The United States is not the only side complaining about cyberattacks ahead of Monday’s summit.
Vladimir Putin told law enforcement officials on Sunday evening that the country had seen a sharp rise in cyberattacks during the World Cup as he thanked Russian law enforcement in person for providing security during the tournament.
“Almost 25 million cyberattacks and other situations of criminal impact on the Russian information infrastructure associated with the organization of the World Cup were neutralized during the championship,” Putin said In Moscow on Sunday evening. The remarks were reported on Monday morning.
Russian officials have pushed the idea of a joint agreement on cybersecurity with the United States for several years. Putin will likely use that fact as a defence when Trump asks about Russia’s election meddling during the 2016 elections, which he said he would “certainly” do in a television interview.
Russia would like an agreement on “informational security,” and includes limits on content that may be objectionable to governments.
That may permit countries to eliminate content from social media sites like Facebook or Twitter that call for protests.
The United States has traditionally defined the issue more closely as cybersecurity, which concerns the use of hacking technology but not content on social media.
Putin’s trip to Helsinki marks the first foreign trip for the Russian president’s new Cortege limousine, which was unveiled with great fanfare at his inauguration in May.
The Kremlin pool reporter for Komsomolskaya Pravda, Dmitry Smirnov, snapped a picture of the limousine at Helsinki’s airport where Putin is expected to land more than 45 minutes late.
Дмитрий Смирнов (@dimsmirnov175)
Первый зарубежный выезд «Кортежа»: Лимузин ждет Путина в аэропорту Хельсинки pic.twitter.com/akgrQmaIJJ
July 16, 2018
The Kremlin pool arrived earlier in a separate plan and have some time on their hands.
At Putin’s inauguration, the limousine drove him about 200m from the Kremlin’s Senate Building to the Andreevsky Hall.
Monday’s route will be slightly more arduous, usually about a 25-minute ride to the city’s Presidential Palace where he will meet one-on-one with Trump.
He has also shown off the limousine to the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed.
The domestically produced luxury car was a point of pride for Putin, who used a Mercedes until this year. The state news agency Sputnik wrote that the car was the first domestically produced limousine for a head of state since Mikhail Gorbachev’s Zil-41052 in 1985.