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2008 G8 summit launched in Hokkaido, Japan

Monday, July 7, 2008

The 2008 G8 summit, a gathering of the leaders of France, United States, United Kingdom, Russia, Germany, Japan, Italy, and Canada, began today in Hokkaido, Japan. During the first day of the summit several issues were discussed, including the current situation in Zimbabwe, which UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown said was ruled by an "illegitmate regime"

The launch of the press conference

The summit was launched at a press conference that involved US President George W. Bush and Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda. Prior to the press conference, the two leaders met to discuss international affairs. Fukada noted that it had been a very substantive meeting, lasting about an hour. He also said that, "in the meeting, we first shared the view that peace and stability in this region in the past decades have been maintained, thanks to the Japan-U.S. alliance."

George Bush with Dmitry Medvedev

Bush met with, among others, the President of Russia. Afterwards Bush called the meeting long and meaningful, and noted that "Iran is an area where Russia and the United States have worked closely in the past and will continue to work closely to convince the regime to give up its desire to enrich uranium."

George Bush meeting with the President of Tanzania earlier today

Another item on the first day's agenda was aid provisions for Africa. The politicana were asked to take action on the promises made during the 2005 G8 summit, which included doubling aid to Africa. As part of the discussion on aid in Africa, some African leaders met with the leaders of G8 nations.

In one of the meetings, George Bush discussed aid with the Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete. After the meeting, Bush commented on the role of American aid and Tanzanian leadership in fighting disease in the African country: "One of the things that's so impressive about his [Kikwete's] leadership in Tanzania is that the help of the American people is effective help, measurable in the number of people whose lives are being saved, babies are being helped with malaria... But this success would not have taken place without your [Kikwete's] leadership."


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