The Media Mirror, 03.07.07. What's in today's Russian newspapers?

The presidential summit at Walker Point is the centre of attention for the press on Tuesday. Most newspapers have detailed and informative reports from the United States, where the Russian and American leaders met for talks.

Vremya Novostei says that both presidents were genuinely glad to see each other and talk without the strain of short meetings, when big problems are discussed at a fast pace. They had enough time and they used it to the best effect, laying down the foundation for regional missile defence in Europe.

Izvestia gives more details of the talks, especially Sunday's dinner conversation, and here the hand of an insider is clearly felt. No mystery in that, though: Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, one of the lucky diners, talked to all the media afterwards. It just seems that Izvestia was listening with special care. The talk had been on the continuity of the positive view of each other, usually displayed by Putin and Bush, after next year's presidential elections in both countries.

Kommersant notes that the house of Bush Senior is smaller than an average house on Rublevka, the highway leading out of Moscow and surrounded by prime property. President Bush, says the paper, during the joint press-conference advertised Russia for his fellow-countrymen as “a superpower that managed to pay the debts of the USSR, a country with a growing middle class, where a tremendous transformation is now taking place.”

Izvestia has an exclusive article on European politics by Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov who practically says, with all diplomatic carefulness and politeness that the expansion of the European Union has caused it to swerve from its course and deviate from the basic principle of a union – that of unity and uniformity of policies. The minister calls it “an expansion-related disease” and wishes the E.U. to overcome it quickly, so true partnership could be built between the Union and Russia. Mr Lavrov says that tactical, not strategic problems cause the most trouble in the relations and, being such, they must be not that difficult to resolve.

Back to Vremia Novostei. A report from Sochi says spirits are high and expectations great in this city by the Black Sea. An opinion poll says 87 % of the people living there believe their home town is destined to become the capital of the winter Olympic Games in 2014. The paper says “a self-arranged summer Olympic festival in support of the winter games” is going on in the city streets right now.