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Obama to meet half dozen heads of state in overseas trip
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10:14, July 19, 2008

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· U.S. Presidential Election 2008
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U.S. Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama will meet with a half dozen or so heads of state during his upcoming trip to the Mideast and Europe, his campaign said Friday.

Although it's not clear about the exact date when the senator from Illinois will leave the United States for the trip, he is sure to be on the trip next week.

According to the details announced by his campaign, most of Obama's meetings during the trip will take place in Israel, where the complicated politics will require him to meet lots of rival politicians, including Israeli President Shimon Peres, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, and his potential replacements Tzipi Livni, Ehud Barack, and Benjamin Netanyahu.

He'll also meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Salam Fayyad.

In Germany, Obama will see Prime Minister Angela Merkel and opposition leader Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

Obama will make his biggest public appearance in Berlin, where he will deliver "a substantive speech about American and European relations."

But the speech, which German papers are predicting could draw up to 100,000, won't be at the famed Brandenburg Gate.

Accompanying Obama on the trip will be a team of seasoned foreign policy hands, many of them veterans of the Clinton administration.

Among them are former National Security Adviser Tony Lake, former Mideast envoy Dennis Ross, and Greg Craig, who worked in the former Clinton administration's State Department.

The trip, which is expected to take a week, also includes stops in Jordan, France and Britain.

Source: Xinhua

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