Vatican bids farewell to Blair

Talks are said to have focused on the Middle East conflict and the future of EU.

    Blair leaves office as prime minister 
    next week [AFP]

    Blair leaves office on Wednesday.

     

    The statement, issued after the talks with Benedict and a separate meeting with Tarcisio Bertone, secretary of state cardinal, said there was a "frank" assessment of the international situation.

     

    The discussion is understood to included such themes as the Middle East conflict and the future of the EU.

     

    The Vatican opposed the US-led invasion of Iraq, which Blair supported.

     

    The statement said that Blair has expressed the desire "to dedicate himself in a particular way for peace in the Middle East and for inter-religious dialogue."

     

    Blair's life after Downing Street has been a matter of speculation.

     

    Earlier this week, it was suggested that George Bush, the US president, wants Blair to take the job of Middle East envoy for the Middle East Quartet.

     

    Al Jazeera reported last week that Blair was recommended to join of peacemakers, comprising the US, Russia, the EU and the UN.

     

    Downing Street has refused comment on the reports.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Take a tour through divided Jerusalem

    Interactive: Take a tour through divided Jerusalem

    Take a tour through East and West Jerusalem to see the difference in quality of life for Israelis and Palestinians.

    Stories from the sex trade

    Stories from the sex trade

    Dutch sex workers, pimps and johns share their stories.

    Inside the world of India's booming fertility industry

    Inside the world of India's booming fertility industry

    As the stigma associated with being childless persists, some elderly women in India risk it all to become mothers.