Source Pravda.Ru

Bush on his relations with Putin

President George Bush Jr. of the United States said he cherished his good relations with President Vladimir Putin of the Russian Federation.

I established good relations with Vladimir from the very beginning, Bush told reporters at a press conference, after the G-8 summit wound up. He has strong convictions. I like that. I like courageous people, Bush noted.

According to Bush, G-8 leaders and he are united by common values.

It's easy to talk to them. Surely enough, our countries don't always reach consensus on all issues. Nonetheless, we agree that we are united by our love for freedom, respect for human rights, freedom of the press and religious freedom. This enables us to conduct healthy discussions, the US leader added.

Bush noted the high level of cooperation between G-8 secret services in fighting terrorism.

We maintain excellent international cooperation in the context of anti-terrorist operations; the same can be said about intelligence-data exchanges between G-8 countries and other states, Bush added, also noting the impressive level of cooperation between G-8 law-enforcement agencies.

European and US commando units are operating in remote Afghan areas, as they search for Al-Qaida and surviving Talibs, the US leader stressed.

We'll continue to persistently fight this enemy for the sake of all free people's future, as long as I remain President of the United States, Bush said.

For his own part, Vladimir Putin believes that the Democratic Party's criticism of George Bush for his Iraqi policies is not justified.

Bush's political opponents have no moral right to criticize him for current Iraqi policies because they had implemented well-nigh the same policies in Yugoslavia, Putin told correspondents at a press conference, after the G-8 summit wound up.

Vladimir Putin and George Bush discussed the development of the Russian mass media in the context of providing them with a powerful economic base.

We had discussed press-related issues back in Camp David, Putin said. In his opinion, a powerful economic base is the only way to set up independent mass-media bodies.

We'll strive to create favorable conditions enabling the mass media to create its own powerful economic base, Putin went on to say. In his words, the Russian-US working group will continue to discuss this issue.

Vladimir Putin thanked George Bush for the summit's good organization.

An informal and frank atmosphere was created thanks to George Bush; we did argue in a friendly and benevolent atmosphere, the Russian head of state noted.

The summit has succeeded; and we congratulate our US friends on its good organization, Putin stressed.

At the same time, Putin believes it's still premature to discuss the 2006 G-8 summit's location on Russian territory. For its own part, Great Britain will host the next G-8 summit. Nonetheless, Putin promises to ensure the 2006 summit's good organization.

It's still too early to talk about this; we still have a lot of time ahead of us. We'll analyze subsequent developments inside important spheres being discussed by us. We'll try and create favorable conditions for fruitful work, suggesting some interesting issues for discussion, Putin said.