» Monday, June 6, 2005

Washington Talks

Asked if there was anything else on the agenda other than G8 and the environment that might be discussed between President Bush and the Prime Minister during their meeting, for example, issues on Iran or the UN, the PMOS said that clearly, we were at an important time with regards the Middle East, and both sides, therefore, would want to update each other on Middle East issues. With regards to Iran, the E3 and the US were working very closely with each other, and we would want to compare notes on that, as we would with North Korea and Afghanistan, as it was a chance to update information. The PMOS said that it was likely that the subject of the UN would be brought up as well.

Asked if there was a more detailed programme of the Washington visit, the PMOS said there was not at this stage.

When pressed for more details, the PMOS said there would be private meetings connected to the G8 happening in the morning.

Put to him that the G8 was not a private event, the PMOS explained that the meetings were concerning G8 business.

Asked if the individuals who were holding the private G8 meetings were connected to the American Government, the PMOS replied that they were not.

Asked if the Government was "playing down" any expectations of any firm announcements of progress tomorrow on aid and debt relief, the PMOS said that as he had said earlier this morning, the Washington visit was part of the preparation of Gleneagles, rather than Gleneagles itself. Therefore, we were not expecting to see a final US position tomorrow. Rather, this was a chance to first of all reinforce the agreement that Africa’s problems were not solved by throwing money at it, but instead, by a proper combination of increased aid, debt relief, progress on access to trade and, crucially, improved governance in Africa. It was that comprehensive approach that underlaid both the Commission for Africa and America’s approach. We agreed with that. Within that, talks could be held about increased aid, debt relief and access to trade as well as improved governments.

Asked about the International Finance Facility (IFF), the PMOS replied that the American position on IFF and climate change in Kyoto was well known. What was important was they still genuinely believed progress on the issues of Africa could be made, as well as on climate change, particularly, how we developed new technology and new designs, and how we brought in the emerging nations who were not part of the Kyoto discussions.

Briefing took place at 15:45 | Search for related news

1 Comment »

  1. What’s the point of asking? We’re still getting lies about Bliars visit to the US before the Iraq invasion; why should they tell us the truth now?!

    Comment by PapaLazzzaru — 7 Jun 2005 on 12:44 pm | Link

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