Where's Canada? 'Bathroom break' confuses the G20 family photo

Andrew Woodcock,Press Association
Thursday 02 April 2009 15:35
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But it wasn't that simple for the 2009 London Summit of the G20: The traditional "family photo" of world leaders gathered for the G20 summit in London had to be restaged today after it was noticed that Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper was missing from the line-up.

Rumours circulating among reporters at the ExCeL Centre in Docklands suggested that Mr Harper had chosen an inopportune moment for a "bathroom break" and faced some light-hearted joshing from US President Barack Obama when he returned.

The world leaders reassembled to put on their summit smiles for the cameras a second time, but the photographers once again missed out on snapping the full complement of prime ministers, presidents and kings, as this time Italy's Silvio Berlusconi and Indonesia's Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono were absent.

But for the main images Berlusconi used his showbiz instincts to ensure himself prime position.

Every leader at this conference wants to be pictured close to glamorous new American president Barack Obama, but few would have the chutzpah to do it the way Berlusconi did.

As the leaders got into place for the line-up, the Italian PM flung his arms around the shoulders of Mr Obama and Russian president Dmitry Medvedev and the three of them beamed into the camera lenses - Obama with his thumbs up - for all the world like a trio of old buddies.

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