U-S President Bill Clinton held a bilateral meeting with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on Wednesday, the first day of the U-N Millennium Summit of World Leaders in New York.
In a news conference, Clinton said he hoped that the next American president and President Putin would be able to work together to resolve disagreements over a missile defence system.
Clinton also commented on the middle east peace talks, saying that due to current political realities in Israel, it was necessary to forge an agreement soon.
The president was referring to the collapse of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak's government coalition due to disagreements over possible territorial concessions proposed as part of the agreement.
"Let me just say one thing about the ABM issue. We have worked together on nuclear issues very closely for virtually the whole time I've been in office and actually for quite a long time before that. The decision that I made last week on our missile defence will create an opportunity for President Putin and our next American president to reach a common position and I hope they can because I think it's very important for the future that we continue to work together."
SUPER CAPTION: U.S. President Bill Clinton
"I think the main thing they have to decide is whether there is going to be an agreement within what it the real calendar which is the calendar is ticking in the middle east against the political reality in Israel as well as for the Palestinians. So there's a limit on how much time they have and it's not very much longer."