Blair and Bush faced tough negotiations

British Prime Minister &to=http:// ' target=_blank>Tony Blair was back in London Wednesday facing tough negotiations on deals to boost aid for Africa and curb global warming in time for next month's G8 summit in Scotland.

U.S. President George W. Bush moved towards Blair's position on writing off poor countries' debt and praised his close ally for pressing Africa's cause when they met in Washington Tuesday.

But Bush offered little to encourage Blair's hopes of mounting a joint international fight against global warming.

Blair travels next week to Moscow, Berlin and Paris to continue his whirlwind campaign to try to bring &to=http:// ' target=_blank>G8 leaders together on Africa aid and global warming -- two issues he sees as the centerpiece of Britain's year-long chairmanship of the leading nations club, reports CNN News.

On increasing aid to Africa, the U.S. promised $674 million more in targeted famine relief. That figure however is considerably lower than what would be required if Mr. Blair's goal of doubling international aid to the continent over the next five years is to be met.

On the third key part of Britain's African plan, dismantling restrictive trade barriers, Mr. Blair said in the House of Commons that more intensive discussions will be required.

On the second important issue at the July summit in Scotland, climate change, the prime minister underlined that while the U.S. held a different view on tackling the problem, that did not mean that progress could not be made at the Gleneagles gathering.

Mr. Blair urged his fellow politicians to wait and see what can be agreed to in the coming weeks on climate change. Mr. Blair added, without the U.S. involved in the dialogue on the issue, no real progress could be made.

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