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World leaders have gathered in Washington for a crisis summit
World leaders have gathered in Washington for a crisis summit on ways to tackle the ongoing financial crisis, as well as measures to reform the global economic system.

At a White House dinner for G20 heads of state on Friday evening, U.S. President George Bush attempted to lower expectations that the summit would come up with a fix-all solution for current financial woes.

"This problem did not develop overnight and it will not be solved overnight, but with continued cooperation and determination it will be solved," he said.

The White House later said that the working dinner had been "productive."

G20 heads of state and finance ministers are to hold a five-hour meeting on Saturday. The G20 is made up of the world's top 19 economies, plus the European Union.

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will also attend the meeting, which begins at 8:00 a.m. (13:00 GMT).

Divisions are likely to emerge at the meeting as European countries have expressed support for stricter market rules in a bid to tackle the crisis, while the U.S. and other countries are in favor of more moderate reforms.

A Kremlin source said earlier that Moscow "did not expect any major breakthroughs" from the summit. However, an aide to the Russian president has said the G20 financial summit will be an unprecedented event.

"For the first time ever, the leaders of the world's leading economies will gather in such a broad format to discuss one of the most acute issues of modern development," Sergei Prikhodko said.

"This means that the international community is gradually beginning to realize that global problems affecting the interests of virtually all countries cannot be solved from a single center and that the time is ripe for truly collective decisions and actions," he added.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said on Friday it would be necessary to hold another meeting to discuss ways to overcome the ongoing global financial crisis after the Washington summit.

"It is clear that we will be unable to immediately sign any new deals, to come to an agreement on which institutions should remain and which ones should be reformed," he said after the EU-Russia summit in Nice, France.

Medvedev left for Washington immediately after the conclusion of the Nice summit, and then headed straight for the White House after landing in the U.S.

On the sidelines of the Washington summit, Medvedev will hold a number of bilateral meetings with other heads of states.

According to a Kremlin report, the Russian president will hold bilateral meetings with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Chinese leader Hu Jintao and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

U.S. president-elect Barack Obama will not attend the meeting, but has sent representatives, including the former U.S. secretary of state, Madeleine Albright, to meet world leaders on the sidelines of the summit.

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