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February 27, 2011

Watch David Cameron's 25 minute interview with Al Jazeera

Questions were submitted via YouTube, txt and email from all over the world.

Mr Cameron...

  • insisted that the UK had some of the strictest controls on arms sales in the world;
  • attacked the Libyan regime's conduct as "unacceptable";
  • explained the rationale for spending cuts, noting that the NHS - the service most important to vulnerable people - had had its budget ringfenced;
  • argued that he was being tough-but-fair on banks;
  • promised to rebalance the economy towards manufacturing and exports;
  • re-link the UK to the fastest-growing economies in the world;
  • committed to simplify the tax and regulatory system;
  • said that cannabis was a dangerous drug connected to mental illnesses and that drug legalisation would only increase use and problems;
  • noted that Iran was a different case from other potentially nuclear-armed states because it has vowed to wipe another state (Israel) off the face of the planet;
  • promised UK troops would "come home" from Afghanistan as soon as that nation's own security forces were able to stop the nation becoming, again, a base for al-Qaeda or other terrorists;
  • rejected the idea that an in/out referendum would resolve the question of EU membership and said he wanted to change the EU but remain a full member;
  • defended the right of Wales and Scotland to continue to offer free tuition at universities but argued that fees will, for English universities, mean a better-funded, higher quality education in the years ahead;
  • repeated his promise to reduce net immigration from the hundreds of thousands to the tens of thousands;
  • said the Berlin Wall's fall in 1989 - "the year of liberation" - was the most important world event in his political development and continues to give him hope for the future;
  • identified climate change as the greatest challenge facing the next generation and global poverty as the greatest challenge of today.

Barack Obama has been interviewed in this series.

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