The US ambassador to NATO said Tuesday that a positive summit in Brussels could help President Donald Trump be tough with Russian leader Vladimir Putin.
Trump will face fellow leaders on Wednesday and Thursday at the NATO meeting in the Belgian capital. Next Monday in Helsinki, Finland, he will sit down with Putin.
Kay Bailey Hutchison told CNBC’s Hadley Gamble in Brussels that fears the transatlantic alliance would be weakened by a blossoming relationship between the U.S. and Russian leaders were misplaced.
She said a successful meeting of NATO partners will, in fact, allow Trump to talk firmly with his Russian counterpart.
“He is going to have a strong and good summit of allies where we talk frankly, but we are together on the big issues and that’s a position of strength going to talk with Vladimir Putin,” the ambassador said.
Hutchison added that she expected Trump to ask Putin to stop sanctioning Russian acts of “hybrid warfare.”
“He’s going to say, stop the malign behavior, particularly in the U.K. but also in many other countries,” she added.