Washington softens stance on U.S. investors mingling with Putin and allies

June 2, 2017 By Sujata Rao and Yeganeh Torbati ST PETERSBURG, Russia/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – For three years after Russia annexed Crimea, Washington officials quietly cautioned major U.S. firms about attending the annual St Petersburg forum, where investors mingle with President Vladimir Putin and his lieutenants. This year, the first forum since Donald Trump became U.S. president, such cautions were not issued, according to four people familiar with preparations for U.S. companies to attend. Washington’s policy toward Russia is essentially unchanged under Trump, with the United States committed to maintaining sanctions…

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