Putin thanks Trump for tip that prevented terror attack

Russian President Vladimir Putin thanked President Trump during a call on Sunday for information that helped prevent a terrorist attack in St. Petersburg, according to a White House readout.

“Based on the information the United States provided, Russian authorities were able to capture the terrorists just prior to an attack that could have killed large numbers of people. No Russian lives were lost and the terrorist attackers were caught and are now incarcerated,” the readout says.

“President Trump appreciated the call and told President Putin that he and the entire United States intelligence community were pleased to have helped save so many lives. President Trump stressed the importance of intelligence cooperation to defeat terrorists wherever they may be,” it continues.

Russia’s Interfax news agency first reported the call.

“The Russian President thanked his American colleague for the information passed on by the Central Intelligence Agency, which helped detain a group of terrorists preparing explosions in St Petersburg’s Kazansky Cathedral and other busy sites in the city,” the Kremlin said, Reuters reported.

The Russian president also assured Trump that Russian intelligence officials would immediately pass on any information they obtain on terrorist threats against the U.S., the Russian news outlet added.

Trump passed along Putin’s thanks to CIA Director Mike Pompeo and the agency’s agents, while offering his own praise in which he congratulated Pompeo and “the entire intelligence community on a job well done,” according to the readout.

Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) announced late last week that seven suspected followers of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) had been arrested for allegedly plotting an attack in St. Petersburg, The Associated Press reported.

The agency reportedly found and seized explosives and other weapons while searching apartments in the city.

Russian TV stations also aired footage of FSB agents detaining an individual who later confessed that he was ordered to build “homemade bombs rigged with shrapnel,” the AP reported.

The arrests come after over a dozen people were killed and nearly 50 others injured in a suicide bombing in St. Petersburg’s subway in April.

The two leaders also spoke last week.

“President Trump thanked President Putin for acknowledging America’s strong economic performance in his annual press conference,” the White House said in a statement.

“The two presidents also discussed working together to resolve the very dangerous situation in North Korea,” the White House added.

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