From bookends to saki cups, the prime minister received a host of gifts from fellow world leaders over the past year. Not surprisingly, none were more elaborate than the ones Stephen Harper received from his Italian counterpart, Silvio Berlusconi. As host of the G8 summit in L’Aquila, Berlusconi treated Harper to a monogrammed bathrobe, towel and slipper set, as well as a fine linen table cloth and napkins, a leather briefcase, and a three-volume red-leather set of Who’s Who in Italy. Harper’s wife Laureen, meanwhile, made out with a black leather jacket as a gift from Berlusconi. The prime minister is obligated by law to declare the gifts he receives and cannot accept anything valued at over $1,000. Some of the other gifts Harper’s office declared for 2009 include four bottles of tequila from governor of Mexico’s state of Jalisco, a leather-bound map from 1783 of the British Territories of Canada and the U.S from President Barack Obama, and two 18-day passes to the Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto.
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