Wolfowitz denies criticism of his new role

March 18, 2005 at 12:30 PM
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WASHINGTON, March 18 (UPI) -- Paul Wolfowitz says he will work only as an international civil servant and not impose U.S. views when he becomes World Bank president.

The U.S. deputy defense secretary, named to head the World Bank by President Bush, rejected accusations, mostly from Europe, he is being named to the post only to promote U.S. foreign policy, the Financial Times reported Friday.

"I am not the American executive director at the World Bank. I would be the president of the World Bank and I've got to try to bring all those different views together, those different visions together to shape a common approach," he told the Times in an interview.

European officials, while not willing to provoke a fight over the top job at the World Bank, have privately expressed concern about Wolfowitz because of his support of the Iraq war.

"It is a real regret that I am giving up a very important job that I still find incredibly rewarding and incredibly important," Wolfowitz said. "But ... I have been offered an opportunity to contribute in a different way at an even higher level."

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