Bush cancels scheduled speech in Denver to avoid being seen together with Assange

Saturday, February 26, 2011

WASHINGTON - Former US President George W. Bush had cancelled his scheduled speech on Friday after he came to know that the group that invited him, the Young Presidents Organization, had also asked the controversial Wikileaks founder Julian Assange to take the conference stage.

“The former President has no desire to share a forum with a man who has willfully and repeatedly done great harm to the interests of the United States,” The New York Times quoted Bush’s spokesman, David Sherzer, as saying in a statement.

Sherzer further said that Bush had accepted an invitation to be a part of this weekend’s Global Leadership Summit in Denver, and speak on a number of topics ranging from education reform to the latest unrest in the Middle East. He, however, said that Bush cancelled his scheduled visit after he came to know this week that he would have to share space with Assange. n a statement, the Young Presidents Organization, a non-profit networking group with 18,000 members, confirmed that Mr. Bush had cancelled his appearance.

“We regret that our members will not be able to hear from President Bush. President Bush has spoken to our members several times in the past and we hope to have him participate in another YPO event in the future. YPO’s only mission is to enable members to become better leaders through education and idea exchange,” he added.

On Friday, Assange had appeared at the Young Presidents Organization by satellite conference, the Organization’s Twitter feed has said.

Assange, whose organization has leaked tens of thousands of military documents and diplomatic cables, is currently living in the United Kingdom. Earlier this week, a British court had said that he must be extradited to Sweden to face trail on sexual assault allegations. (ANI)

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