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Trump backs off idea for joint US/Russian 'impenetrable Cyber Security unit'

Goes from #MAGA to 'can't happen' in eight tweets

By Simon Sharwood, 10 Jul 2017

US president Donald Trump has revealed that he and Russian opposite number Vladimir Putin discussed creation of a joint “impenetrable Cyber Security unit” at the G20 Leaders summit, but then displayed Modern Presidential behaviour by quickly dismissing the chances of the unit ever materialising.

Trump was a bit late to reveal the talks, as Putin's Saturday-dated official transcript of his end-of-G20 press conference revealed that he and Trump discussed security collaboration as follows:

The US President and I have agreed to establish a working group and make joint efforts to monitor security in the cyberspace, ensure full compliance with international laws in this area, and to prevent interference in countries' internal affairs. Primarily this concerns Russia and the United States. We believe that if we succeed in organising this work – and I have no doubt that we will – there will be no more speculation over this matter.

“This matter” is Russia's alleged interference in last year's US elections.

On Sunday, US time, Trump popped out this Tweet.

The White House Briefing Room was silent on both Trump's meeting with Putin and offered no details of the “unit”.

But Trump weighed in again thirteen hours after his first Tweet with this one.

Why the turnaround? Your idea's as good as anyone's, dear readers, although perhaps US senator Marco Rubio's opinion on the unit was typical of Republican sentiment on the idea.

The United States already has a “no-hack pact” with China, although it's been described as a “joke” by one analyst. ®

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