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Pres. Bush Prepares to Greet Important Guests

Posted April. 15, 2008 03:08,   


U.S. President George W. Bush is set to greet a series of important guests in Washington this week.

The first visitor will be Korean President Lee Myung-bak, who will stay in Washington Wednesday through Saturday.

Pope Benedict XVI will begin a five-day trip to the U.S. capital Saturday in the first U.S. papal visit since Pope John Paul II came in 1979.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown will begin a two-day visit Thursday.

President Lee will meet President Bush Friday at Camp David, Maryland. The U.S. leader and his wife will personally greet Lee and his wife at the helicopter base.

Bush will then guide them to the guesthouse by personally driving them on a golf cart. He is expected to give a leather jacket with a presidential seal to Lee as a gift.

Prior to the Camp David visit, President Lee will stay at Blair House, the official state guesthouse for the U.S. president in Washington in front of the White House, Wednesday through Thursday.

Diplomatic sources in Washington say it is rare for a head of state to be invited to both Camp David and Blair House.

President Bush will also await the arrival of Pope Benedict XVI Tuesday at Andrews Air Force Base near Washington, the first U.S. leader to personally greet the head of another nation at an airport.

About 12,000 people are expected to attend the welcoming ceremony at the White House on Wednesday, more than the 7,000 who showed up for Queen Elizabeth when she visited Washington last year.

Prime Minister Brown’s visit will mainly consist of working-level meetings. After talks with Bush in the White House Thursday, he will speak with each of the three major U.S. presidential candidates – Republican candidate John McCain and Democratic candidates Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.