LATEST: Campaigning rocker SIR Bob Geldof has urged British Prime Minister Tony Blair to secure "payback" for Britain's role in the Iraq war, by pressurising US President George W Bush to increase his foreign aid budget.

Speaking at the Scottish Parliament's Conference On Africa event in Edinburgh yesterday (16MAY05), Geldof ordered Blair to lobby Bush to boost aid to Africa by $57 billion (GBP30 billion) a year over the next decade.

The former Boomtown Rat added that leaders of the world's eight largest industrial countries should not attend July's (05) G8 Summit meeting unless they are prepared to cancel Third World debt, double the aid budget and rewrite global trade laws so developing countries can protect their economies.

Geldof, who is part of Blair's COMMISSION FOR AFRICA, said, "George Bush owes Tony Blair personally a lot. The man (Blair) put a lot of political credibility into doing what he thought was right but also supporting a man he thought was right.

"There is a payback for that and I think this is the time when the Prime Minister must say to the president, 'This is what I want'."

17/05/2005 14:04