Accessibility links

Bush Talks With Italian, Russian Leaders by Telephone - 2003-08-31

U.S. President George Bush has talked by telephone with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.

White House officials say the conversation centered around "continuing international cooperation and efforts to rebuild Iraq." The chat came a day after Mr. Putin said Russia would be open to an international force in Iraq under U.S. command, as long as it was approved by the U.N. Security Council.

Mr. Putin and Mr. Berlusconi talked with the U.S. president from the Italian prime minister's seaside estate in Sardinia. Mr. Berlusconi has hosted the Russian president for three days of talks and leisure starting Friday.

Russia was one of the most vocal opponents of the U.S.-led war against Iraq. The nation, along with Germany and France, has pushed for a larger United Nations role in the aftermath of the war.