US President George W. Bush was hosting Russian President Vladimir Putin Sunday at the Bush family's summer home on the craggy Maine coast, hoping that applying the personal touch can once again improve frayed relations in one of the world's most crucial partnerships.
Before leaving for the United States, Putin emphasized his "friendly" personal relationship with Bush, suggesting it should create a positive atmosphere for the summit. Putin was scheduled to arrive in Maine at 4:30 p.m. Sunday.
"I hope that the dialogue with a person with whom good, I would say friendly, relations have developed, will have precisely that character," Putin said during a meeting Sunday with Russian Olympic athletes at his residence outside Moscow. "If it wasn't that way, I wouldn't go, and I wouldn't have been invited."
"In politics, as in sports, there is always competition. It's important for these competitions to be conducted under certain rules and with respect for each other," he added.