G8 offers alternative to terror, says Blair

With the rest of the G8 members and heads of emerging countries standing shoulder to shoulder behind him, Mr Blair said: "There is no hope in terrorism, nor any future in it worth living. It is that alternative to this hatred that we offer. This is in contrast to the politics of terror."

Mr Blair warned that the terrorists' goal was to spread "despair, anger and hatred" in Britain, and he reinforced appeals to prevent a backlash against the Muslim community.

Mr Blair insisted that the deal agreed at Gleneagles would provide hope for Africa and the world that would not be eclipsed by the terrorist attacks.

As Mr Blair flew back to London to chair a meeting of Cobra, the emergency committee on the bombings, a senior official said it was important to let the police and intelligence services get on with tracking down the terrorists. "There will be a time later to discuss these things," he said.

Mr Blair rejected any attempt to lay blame for the bombings on intelligence and security failures, insisting that the blame lay squarely with the terrorists.

Ending the G8 Summit, Mr Blair was asked about the failures that had allowed the bombers to succeed. "I think those people who kill the innocent and cause bloodshed are ... solely responsible," he said.

Mr Blair said the G8's final communique would not match the "ghastly impact of the cruelty of terror".

However, he said: "It has a pride, and a hope and a humanity at its heart that can lift the shadow of terrorism and light the way to a better future.

"That is why we are convinced that the politics we represent will triumph over terrorism."

The G8 endorsed a statement committing the world leaders to united action on counter-terrorism. It said they were "united in condemning in the strongest terms the terrorist attacks".

Collectively the G8 leaders said their countries were "developing a common understanding of the threat" and assessing links between crime and terrorism. "As terrorists operate flexibly and internationally, so must we. Government, police and intelligence responses must be more effectively co-ordinated," said the statement.

Ken Livingstone, the Mayor of London, insisted that every major city in the world faced the threat of terrorism, and rejected suggestions that Thursday's attacks were the result of the war in Iraq. He said: "It's simply a criminal attempt at mass murder."

Mr Livingstone said a book of condolence would be opened at City Hall on Monday, while an appeal, the London Bombings Relief Fund, would be established to raise funds for the victims of the attacks and their families.

In a message to the attackers, he declared: "Watch next week as we bury our dead and mourn them but see also on this same day, new people coming to this city to make it their home and calling themselves Londoners and doing it because of the freedom to be themselves."

But George Galloway, the left-wing MP for Bethnal Green and Bow, called on Mr Blair and US President George Bush to resign. He said: "If we allow this despicable act of mass murder to be used as justification for more despicable acts of mass murder visited by us on them they will seek to inflict another act of mass murder on us and that dismal cycle of death and destruction will continue."

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
News
Keith Fraser says we should give Isis sympathises free flights to join Isis (AFP)
news
Life and Style
Google celebrates the 126th anniversary of the Eiffel Tower opening its doors to the public for the first time
techGoogle celebrates Paris's iconic landmark, which opened to the public 126 years ago today
News
Cleopatra the tortoise suffers from a painful disease that causes her shell to disintegrate; her new prosthetic one has been custom-made for her using 3D printing technology
newsCleopatra had been suffering from 'pyramiding'
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Coachella and Lollapalooza festivals have both listed the selfie stick devices as “prohibited items”
music
Sport
Nigel Owens was targeted on Twitter because of his sexuality during the Six Nations finale between England and France earlier this month
rugbyReferee Nigel Owens on coming out, and homophobic Twitter abuse
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Senior Web Designer / Front End Developer

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast expanding web managem...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

£40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor