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G8 Leaders to Discuss Africa, Climate Change

  • VOA News

Leaders from the world's seven top industrial nations plus Russia are gathering in Scotland for a summit expected to focus on aid to Africa and climate change. The three-day Group of Eight meeting opens on Wednesday at the Gleneagles resort near Edinburgh. British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who is hosting the summit, has said he hopes for significant progress on fighting poverty and disease in Africa, and on opening G-8 markets to African trade. He also called for a consensus on climate change. Before heading to Scotland, President Bush restated his opposition to the Kyoto protocol aimed at reducing greenhouse gases, saying the pact excludes many developing nations. In the remarks in Denmark, Mr. Bush also reaffirmed support for canceling the debt of the poorest African countries, but stressed assistance should be tied to good governance. The G-8 leaders are expected to endorse a deal to write-off more than 40 billion dollars in debt owed by 18 countries, mainly in sub-Saharan Africa. African Union leaders have called for debt reduction for the entire continent.
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