Before details of the meeting were announced Thursday, the president tweeted about the investigation, writing that "Russia continues to say they had nothing to do with meddling in our election!"
Russia continues to say they had nothing to do with Meddling in our Election! Where is the DNC Server, and why didn’t Shady James Comey and the now disgraced FBI agents take and closely examine it? Why isn’t Hillary/Russia being looked at? So many questions, so much corruption!
Trump has met Putin in-person twice — once at the Group of 20 nations summit in Germany last July and later at the Asia-Pacific summit in Vietnam last November.
Their first dedicated meeting will come after a busy six days in Europe for Trump, starting with the NATO summit in Brussels on July 11 and 12, then his visit to the United Kingdom on July 13.
The president has repeatedly and bluntly criticized his European allies and called on them to spend more on defense. He has also given mixed messages on NATO's crucial mutual defense clause, explicitly endorsing it last year after months of apparent hesitancy.
Other NATO members have been unsettled by Trump's rhetoric, as well this month's G-7 summit, which saw Trump leave early and then pull out of the culminating agreement amid a flurry of tweets.
Earlier this year, Trump slapped sanctions on Russia and expelled dozens of diplomats. More recently, he suggested that Moscow be reinstated into the G-7 after it was expelled in 2014 for annexing Crimea.
Allies are now nervously eyeing Trump's trip to Europe, according to Heather A. Conley, director of the Europe Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
"The difficulties before, during and after the G-7 summit raised the stakes enormously for the president’s visit to Brussels, the U.K. and potential U.S.-Russia Summit in Helsinki," she said, speaking before the meeting with Putin was confirmed.