German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and President Bush said they still support Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev but were non-comittal on whether he should be invited to the yearly meeting of the world's seven largest industrialized nations.

The two leaders, speaking Monday after 90 minutes of talks at the White House, also called for keeping U.S. troops in Western Europe under NATO to maintain strong links between the United States and Europe in the post-Cold War era.Kohl told reporters that NATO should exist in "an adjusted form" and that if it does, "it is also important in the future that the United States maintains a substantial troop presence in Germany and also in Europe as a whole."

Bush and Kohl, who spoke at a White House Rose Garden news conference, were cautious on whether any new Western aid would be granted to Moscow, saying the emphasis now was on "self-help".

Bush said they were generally in agreement "that we would like to help the Soviet Union in every way possible, and we both expressed our confidence in President Gorbachev."