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Brown returns gift from Bush

In what appears to mark an end to the practice of exchanging gifts with world leaders at 10 Downing Street...

By: PTI | London |
July 24, 2008 2:53:49 am

In what appears to mark an end to the practice of exchanging gifts with world leaders at 10 Downing Street, Prime Minister Gordon Brown has rejected a present that he received from US President George W Bush.

Emblazoned with the presidential logo and featuring the Prime Minister’s name, Brown rejected the “bomber” jacket given by Bush during his first trip to the United States since he shifted to 10 Downing Street.

The list of gifts received by government ministers in the last year, which they are required to declare if the value is estimated at more than £140 shows that the British premier chose not to exercise the option of keeping the presidential present.

In fact, the change of regime at No 10 appears to have marked an end to the practice of exchanging gifts with world leaders, The Daily Telegraph said on Wednesday.

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Ministers are only allowed to retain gifts received in the course of their ministerial duties if they recompensate the public purse to the appropriate value.

While former premier Tony Blair purchased a picture worth £500 given to him by Bush, the gift of a ‘leather holdall/clothing” given to the new Prime Minister a few months later is said to have been “held by the department”, the daily said.

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