Blair plotted to stop Brown from succeeding him as British PM: Report

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London, Aug 29(ANI): Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair had reportedly attempted to prolong his time in 10 Downing Street and prevent Gordon Brown from succeeding him, following warning that George W Bush's US administration had "grave doubts" about Brown's suitability.

According to The Sunday Telegraph, the White House warnings played a key role in Blair's attempt to cling on to power until at least 2008, and to groom David Miliband as his successor.

Blair was reportedly told that Bush and those around him would have "big problems" working with Brown, after which he made his intentions clear of staying until at least next US election in 2008.

"This at last answers the question of why Tony Blair tried so hard to stay on: the Americans were far from happy about the imminent succession of Gordon Brown. They left him in no doubt about that," the newspaper quoted a source, as saying.

However, Blair was forced to abandon this plan following a "coup" led by Brown's supporters.

Brown eventually became the Prime Minister in June 2007, and pursued a foreign policy that was far more independent of the US than Blair's had been.

The "understanding" between Blair and Bush was revealed by well-placed Whitehall sources.

However, the former Prime Minister's spokesman has denied that a "message" had been sent. (ANI)

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