Russian President Vladimir Putin has proposed his vision for a European defense shield, countering a planned U.S.-run system favored by U.S. President George W. Bush.
After talks at the Bush family compound in the northeastern U.S. state of Maine, Mr. Putin said he sees no need to put parts of the system in Poland and the Czech Republic. Mr. Bush replied that those two countries are integral to the plan.
But Mr. Bush did not completely dismiss Mr. Putin's vision, saying it was very sincere and innovative. The Russian leader's plan calls for NATO and all European countries' involvement in the project and for part of the system to be based either in Azerbaijan or, if need be, in a new complex to be built in southern Russia.
The two leaders showed more unity on Iran, referring to cooperation with ongoing attempts by the West to curb Tehran's nuclear activities. The pledged to work with the United Nations Security Council to encourage Iran to stop its uranium enrichment program.
Highlighting attempts at reconciliation, the leaders went fishing Monday morning. Mr. Putin was the only one onboard the Bush family boat to catch a fish, which was later released.
Former President George H.W. Bush and his wife Barbara hosted the gathering.