Russian President Vladimir Putin started his visit of Sea-Island from the meeting with the US President George Bush.
The two Presidents were discussing issues for more than one hour, longer than it was scheduled, reported the Aide of Russian President Sergey Prikhodko. The situation in Iraq was the key issue for the discussion. Vladimir Putin approved the US willingness to cooperate with the other countries while working on the resolution on Iraq. Many Russia’s proposals, such as having international conference, were included in the resolution.
Vladimir Putin accepted George Bush’s invitation for Russia to participate in NATO exercises in North Atlantic in the fall of 2004. The two Presidents spoke about the military cooperation between the two countries.
The situation in North Korea was also discussed, and “Russia confirmed its viewpoint that the issue of North Korean nuclear weapons should be solved in negotiations” and “the interests of both international community and North Korea should be taken into account”.
The US President touched the issue of Iran, and Russia “confirmed its position: it will continue cooperation with Iran in the sphere of nuclear energy (complying with the regulations of International Atomic Energy Agency)”. Russia is not going to share its technologies of enriching uranium with anybody.
According to Sergey Prikhodko, George Bush expressed support to Russia’s intention of joining WTO. The two country leaders also discussed the cooperation in the hi-tech sphere. The conversation between the two Presidents was “frank and friendly, in informal atmosphere”.
After the meeting, George Bush said, “I am always pleased to speak with my good friend Vladimir Putin. This is a powerful leader, he loves his people, his country and has good grasp of the issues he encounters”.
President Putin scheduled about 10 more bilateral meetings with country leaders during G-8 summit in Sea Island.
This June became the season of diplomatic activity for Vladimir Putin who has a chance to improve the position of Russia in the club of the most powerful countries and the bilateral relations with their leaders, first of all with the US President.
Meanwhile, George Bush has the pressing need of the assistance of the G-8 leaders as the further development of the situation in Iraq can determine the outcome of the coming US Presidential elections. Main opponent for George Bush – senator-democrat John Kerry - has rating as high as Bush does, and only in the issue of fighting terrorism George Bushes surpasses his opponent substantially. For this reason, today George Bush needs concrete resolutions to improve his rating in the USA.
George Bush can expect such resolutions from the G-8 members: when the current President runs in the elections in the USA, none of the foreign partners counts on his losing the elections.