George Bush Senior is playing a behind-the-scenes role in helping his son respond to the US terror strikes, it was reported today.
The former president, who led America during the Gulf War, was said to be speaking to his international contacts while his son held high-profile meetings with world leaders.
The elder Mr Bush served as president, vice president and as an ambassador to the United Nations and to China, and is understood to have access to a vast number of leaders, diplomats and high-ranking government officials.
He was thought to have contacted King Juan Carlos of Spain over requests that the country should stop Osama bin Laden's agents travelling through Basque separatist areas, the Daily News in New York reported.
He was considered likely to have contacted Chinese contacts to ensure that China supported the diplomatic effort.
"The old man is engaged well beyond what's been publicly reported - or ever will be," a source told the Daily News.
Mr Bush, now 77, has publicly backed his son in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks, including attending last week's Washington DC prayer service with him.
The President, George W Bush, has surrounded himself with many of the figures who helped to guide his father, including Secretary of State Colin Powell, Vice President Dick Cheney, Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice.
He has also lined up a series of meetings with world leaders, including Prime Minister Tony Blair and French President Jacques Chirac, as he attempts to build the kind of coalition his father achieved during the Gulf War.
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