The leaders of America and Germany have met in Washington, with Angela Merkel keen to get a photo opportunity alongside Germany’s favourite politician ahead of the September general election.
But she came bearing few gifts, except to join President Obama in praising the Iranian people: “Today we speak with one voice. The rights of the Iranian people to assemble, to speak freely, to have their voices heard – those are universal aspirations and their bravery in the face of brutaly is a testament of their enduring pursuit of justice. The violence perpetrated against them is outrageous. Despite the governement’s efforts to keep the world from bearing witness to that violence, we see it and we condemn it,” he said. Merkel repeated Germany would not be taking in large numbers of Guantanamo detainees. She did, however, join Obama in rebuffing Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s call for foreign “apologies” on their comments after the Iranian election, saying instead they would be better directed towards his own people for the way they have been treated since the vote.