Obama praises 'smart' new British PM

12th May 2010, Comments 0 comments

US President Barack Obama Wednesday praised new British Prime Minister David Cameron as "smart, dedicated, effective" and said he had renewed Britain's support for US strategy in Afghanistan.

Obama called Cameron Tuesday just minutes after the new British leader walked into Downing Street for the first time, following the resignation of Gordon Brown in the wake of last week's elections.

The US leader said he had already met Cameron, adding: "I find him to be a smart, dedicated, effective leader and somebody who we are going to be able to work with very effectively."

Obama said he and Cameron had confirmed "the extraordinary special relationship between the United States and Great Britain. One that outlasts any individual party, any individual leader. It is built up over centuries."

Cameron had also "reaffirmed, without me bringing it up, his commitment to our strategy in Afghanistan," Obama told a joint press conference with Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

"I am confident that the new government is going to recognize that it is in the interest of all the coalition partners to help President Karzai succeed and to build a more prosperous and secure and stable Afghanistan."

Around 9,000 British troops are fighting a Taliban insurgency alongside US and NATO forces in Afghanistan.

© 2010 AFP

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