President Bush Reacts to London Attacks

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NPR's David Greene, reporting from the G8 summit in Gleneagles, Scotland, discusses President Bush's reaction to the London bombings and his warning to Americans to be vigilant.

RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

A series of explosions in London during morning rush hour have left a number of people killed, some reports say dozens, and many seriously injured. Reports put it in--those numbers in the hundreds. The explosions coincided with the G8 Summit in Scotland where President Bush and other world leaders were meeting when news of the blasts started to come in. The president made a statement about the attack soon afterwards.

President GEORGE W. BUSH: The war on terror goes on. I was most impressed by the resolve of all the leaders in the room. Their resolve is as strong as my resolve, and that is we will not yield to these people. We will not yield to the terrorists. We will find them, we will bring them to justice and, at the same time, we will spread an ideology of hope and compassion that will overwhelm their ideology of hate.

MONTAGNE: NPR's David Greene is with the president in Gleneagles, Scotland.

And, David, what else did President Bush have to say in his statement this morning?

DAVID GREENE reporting:

Well, Renee, he had a video news conference when the G8 Summit ground to a halt after the reports were coming in from London, and he said that during that video news conference he had in his suite in the resort here, he told officials back in Washington that he wanted them to contact state and local officials and to make sure they were all being vigilant in case anything happened back at home, especially as Americans were commuting to work this morning. He also said that he firmly backed Prime Minister Blair. And he said that Blair was heading back to London with a message of solidarity from all of the leaders at the summit. So a message of support as Blair was heading back to likely do some tough work.

MONTAGNE: With Prime Minister Blair returning to London, does that have any implications for President Bush? Any question of his--him returning to the US early?

GREENE: It doesn't seem so. And, of course, that was the first question that a lot of reporters were asking the White House officials who are traveling with the president. They said no plans for Mr. Bush to return. He's going to resume the summit schedule as it was set for today. And, in fact, if you listen to what Blair said, he urged the leaders to get on with the summit. His message was `I'm heading back to London. I'm going to be back as soon as possible tonight.' And, as he put it, he wants them to have the discussions they were going to have, come to the conclusions they were going to come to, on issues ranging from global warming to international trade to aid to try and reduce poverty in Africa so he really wanted to try and keep this thing going.

MONTAGNE: David? David? Sorry to interrupt you. That was David Greene, NPR's David Greene, in Scotland.

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