Several hours after the terrorist bombings in London, British Prime Minister Tony Blair gave his reaction.
He spoke at Gleneagles in Scotland, flanked by G8 leaders and the heads of other nations atttending the summit there.
Blair said it was reasonably clear the terrorist attacks were “designed and aimed to coincide” with the meeting.
He told reporters: “This is a statement on behalf of the G8 state leaders, but also of the five countries that have joined us at this summit and this is our joint and united statement. We condemn utterly these barbaric attacks and we send our profound condolences to the victims and their families. All of our countries have suffered from the impact of terrorism. Those responsible have no respect for human life. We are united in our resolve to confront and defeat this terrorism that is not an attack on one nation, but on all nations and on civilized people everywhere. We will not allow violence to change our societies or our values, nor will we allow it to stop the work of this summit. We will continue our deliberations in the interests of a better world. Here at this summit the world’s leaders are striving to combat world poverty and save and improve human life. The perpetrators of today’s attacks are intent on destroying human life. The terrorists will not succeed. Today’s bombings will not weaken in any way our resolve to uphold the most deeply held principles of our societies and to defeat those who would impose their fanaticism and extremism on all of us. We shall prevail and they shall not.
After reading the statement, Blair left the summit for several hours, returning to London to be briefed by security officials. At Gleneagles, the leaders – surrounded by massive security – continued theirdiscussions on the issues of African development and global warming that Blair has made the centerpiece of the gathering.