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Russia: Putin Arrives in Moscow After Two-Day U.S. Summit

Moscow, 28 September 2003 (RFE/RL) Russian President Vladimir Putin has arrived back in Moscow after two days of talks with U.S. President George W. Bush at Camp David near Washington. At the conclusion of their summit, the presidents yesterday called on Iran and North Korea to stop their suspected nuclear-weapons program.

Putin said Iran should increase its cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). But Putin stopped short of Washington's call for the Kremlin to cut aid for the construction of an Iranian nuclear power plant.

"It is our conviction that we shall now give a clear but respectful signal to Iran about the necessity to continue and expand its cooperation with the IAEA," Putin said.

The two presidents also discussed the ongoing conflict in Chechnya and described themselves as "allies in the war on terror." Bush said both Russia and the U.S. have suffered from terrorism.

"Russia and the United States are allies in the war on terror. Both of our nations have suffered at the hands of terrorists, and both of our governments are taking actions to stop them. No cause justifies terror. Terrorists must be opposed wherever they spread chaos and destruction, including Chechnya. A lasting solution to that conflict will require an end to terror, respect for human rights, and a political settlement that leads to free and fair elections," Bush said.

Both leaders said they want to help build democracy in Iraq despite differences over the U.S.-led war there. But Putin did not commit Russian troops to Iraq to help stabilize the situation there.

Putin also said Russia and the United States think there is "no reasonable alternative" to the "road map" for Middle East peace.