Russia

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RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

If George W. Bush was the decider, consider Donald Trump the un-decider. This week, the current president abandoned a string of his best-known policy positions over a matter of days.

During the 2016 presidential campaign the FBI obtained a secret warrant to monitor the communications of Carter Page, who was then serving as an adviser to Donald Trump, over concerns that Page was acting as an agent of Russia, according to a report from The Washington Post.

Updated at 5:45 p.m. ET

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says he had a "productive" meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Kremlin on Wednesday, despite palpable tension between the U.S. and Russia.

"There is a low level of trust between our two countries," Tillerson said after the meeting. "The world's two foremost nuclear powers cannot have this kind of relationship."

Updated at 5:35 p.m. ET

President Trump on Wednesday sharply reversed his 2016 campaign stance on NATO. "I said it was obsolete; it's no longer obsolete," Trump declared, after a meeting at the White House with the alliance's secretary general, Jens Stoltenberg.

Rex Tillerson has touched down in Moscow. But well before his plane landed on the runway, heated words were already flying between the U.S. secretary of state and Russian officials over the situation in Syria.

"I hope that what the Russian government concludes is that they have aligned themselves with an unreliable partner in Bashar al-Assad," Tillerson said Tuesday at a meeting of G-7 foreign ministers in Lucca, Italy, shortly before he left for Russia.

Prompted by a chemical weapons attack, the U.S. loosed dozens of Tomahawk missiles last week on an air base operated by Syrian President Bashar Assad, the embattled ally of Russia.

Updated at 3:15 p.m. ET

Russian President Vladimir Putin is calling the missile strike President Trump ordered against Syria on Thursday "an act of aggression against a sovereign state delivered in violation of international law under a far-fetched pretext."

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

YEVGENY YEVTUSHENKO: (Speaking Russian).

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Updated at 3:50 p.m. ET

Russian investigators say an "explosive device" ignited and ripped through a train car as it was traveling in between metro stations in St. Petersburg, Russia, on Monday afternoon. A second, unexploded device was found at a different metro stop.

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