Friday, 14 November 2003

BUSH OFF

POLL REVEALS BRITS FURIOUS AT VISIT COST

Almost half of Britons believe George Bush is threatening world peace rather than helping bring it about.

And as the US President prepares for his trip to Britain next week, many insist they don't want him here.

Three out of four feel Mr Bush's war on terror is making the planet less safe as renegade groups hit back in retaliation. A Mirror/GMTV poll also found 75 per cent of people were furious at the £4million cost of security for his state visit - far more than has been spent on policing previous trips.

And Tony Blair's "special relationship" with Mr Bush doesn't come out of the ICM survey too well either. Only 27 per cent of those quizzed yesterday believe the partnership is good for Britain while 38 per cent say the opposite.

Massive demonstrations are planned for Mr Bush's visit and US officials had wanted to cordon off large parts of London amid fears of terrorist attacks. But 64 per cent say it is wrong for protesters to be kept away from the President and voicing their disapproval of the Iraq war.

Policing has already been stepped up in readiness for Mr Bush's trip. Armed officers stood guard around the US embassy in Central London yesterday.

Women are the most critical of the state visit and more than half of over-65s think it is wrong.

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