» Thursday, March 30, 2006

Prime Minister’s Visit to Indonesia

The Prime Minister’s Official Spokesman (PMOS) told journalists that before this trip had started, he had said that in many ways, this trip was an illustrated guide to speeches and the themes that the Prime Minister had been developing in his speeches. It had been borne out, particularly in Indonesia.

The Prime Minister found the meeting with the religious leaders both informative and moving, and he did so because clearly, there were differences over issues, and we had to be completely explicit about this, such as Iraq. There was also an acknowledgement by the religious leaders, firstly that Britain was a genuine multi cultural country; secondly that the Government and the Prime Minister had shown itself willing to listen to Muslim opinion in Britain and abroad; and thirdly, that the Prime Minister in this trip had shown that he was committed to reaching a new understanding, if not about the past, at least about the future. That was why it was particularly important that we announced today as part of the agreement with Indonesia, an advisory group made up of religious leaders from within Islam to talk about these kinds of issues, and then to report to the Prime Minister and to the President of Indonesia.

Briefing took place at 6:00 | Search for related news

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