President George W. Bush's decision for the USA to unilaterally withdraw from the ABM treaty will not in the slightest affect new relations with Russia, he reassured. The United States cannot afford any longer to cling to a treaty which impedes efficient defence, so it has to quit. America and Russia now have constructive and much more promising contacts between themselves as they are progressing from guaranteed mutual destruction to partnership. Ljubljana, Genoa, Shanghai, Washington and Crawford summitry brought Presidents Bush and Vladimir Putin to find a new basis for updated bilateral strategic relations. As President Bush sees it, the treaty exit he has announced by no means threatens to undermine the new US-Russian relations, let alone Russian security. President Bush looks forward to a visit to Moscow for his talks with President Putin to go on, and for a formal footing to be given to the new strategic relations. Mr. Bush reported his high evaluations of President Putin's essential advice, and his cooperation in the US struggle to destroy the Afghan-based Al-Qaida network. The US President is enthusiastic about Russia's determination to reduce its nuclear arsenals. As he once again confirmed, the USA intends to reduce its field nuclear warheads to 2,000 or even 1,700.
Russian small missile ships - the Grad Sviyazhsk and the Great Ustyug - set off for a mission to the Mediterranean Sea
President Vladimir Putin has not released an official statement yet about his position on the issue of the pension reform in Russia