The decision to shift the G8 Summit venue to L'Aquila was "the right one", also in consideration of the positive responses coming from the other countries involved. Winding up a visit to L'Aquila with European Commission President Josè Manuel Barroso, Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi stressed once again what a good idea it had been to transfer the July Summit from La Maddalena to L'Aquila.
And today both Queen Elizabeth II, speaking in the course of talks with President of the Italian Republic Giorgio Napolitano, and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton voiced their approval of the decision.
Ms. Clinton called the summit in L'Aquila "an important opportunity" for channelling funds to the economy of the region so hard hit by the earthquake, and she thanked Italy "for Italy's leadership on a series of important priorities for the Obama administration". The G8, Ms. Clinton added, will be "an important step" on the way to resolving a series of global problems.
"We have already received the visit of important delegations such as the US and Russian Federation delegations, and others besides,"Berlusconi said, adding, "the visits will be continuing over the coming weeks." "I am convinced that it is a good decision", the Prime Minister stressed, "because we are bringing the world's economic capital here".
The European Commission president also voiced his appreciation of the decision to shift the G8 Summit to the Abruzzo region, calling it "an excellent idea" and underscoring the fact that it will provide an opportunity to return to L'Aquila again.
Silvio Berlusconi and Josè Manuel Barroso, accompanied by Commissioner Delegate Guido Bertolaso, spent the afternoon touring some of the sites that best symbolize the damage done by the earthquake which hit the Abruzzo region so hard. They stopped at Onna, at the tent village in Paganica, and in the historical centre of L'Aquila itself.