WASHINGTON - U.S. President Donald Trump said Wednesday he wants Russia back at the Group of Seven summits of the world's leading economies, even though it still controls Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula.
Moscow was booted from the group over its unilateral 2014 annexation of the peninsula.
As the G-7 leaders head to the French Atlantic seaside town of Biarritz for their annual meeting this weekend, Trump said it would make sense for Russian President Vladimir Putin to be part of the group again.
Trump seemed unconcerned that Russia considers Crimea part of its territory, instead blaming former U.S. President Barack Obama for Russia's takeover of Crimea.
"They took over during [Obama's] term, not mine," Trump said. "The fact is President Putin totally outsmarted President Obama on Crimea and other things. He made a living on outsmarting President Obama and frankly because of it, Obama was upset and he got [Putin] out of what was the G-8 into the G-7."
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