Obama in Canada for day-long ‘working visit’

February 19th, 2009 - 11:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Barack ObamaOttawa, Feb 19 (IANS) US President Barack Obama landed in the Canadian capital Thursday to what has been described as his “working visit” to its biggest trading partner up north.
Obama was received at Ottawa airport by Canada’s Black Governor General Michaelle Jean, Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon and others.

Helicopters hovered over the airport as Air Force One landed in Canada amid light snowfall.

There was no pomp and pageantry and no gun salute at the airport, as Obama was received by the governor general.

Later, the two leaders moved into the airport to have a 20-miniute private meeting.

After the meeting, Obama was driven in The Beast, as the presidential limousine is called, to the nation’s parliament where he was welcomed by speakers of the Senate and the House of Commons.

The president met Prime Minister Stephen Harper briefly before lunch where they were joined by the Canadian foreign minister, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, Environment Minister Jim Prentice and top Canadian diplomats.

Obama was accompanied by his national security advisor General Jim Jones, national economic council chairman Larry Summers and others.

The global economy, bilateral trade, Afghanistan and the environment were the issues the two leaders discussed during their meeting.

The two leaders were expected to hold a press conference before Obama leaves for Washington in the evening.

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