The Washington Times - January 19, 2009, 08:14AM

President Bush, on his last day as commander-in-chief, is calling world leaders to say goodbye and thank you, the White House announced this morning.

Already today, Mr. Bush has called Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak, Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen, and Italian Prime Minister Sylvia Berlusconi

“The leaders thanked President Bush for his work and for the spirit of cooperation and friendship developed in the last eight years,” said Bush spokeman Gordon Johndroe.

“President Bush expressed his gratitude for the kind hospitality all these leaders showed him and Mrs. Bush over the years and told them how much he enjoyed working with them during his two terms,” Mr. Johndroe said.

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UPDATE - 10:38 a.m. - The White House says that since their first announcement of world leader calls, Mr. Bush called a number of other leaders. He has since called Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, former Mexican President Vicente Fox, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Israeli President, Shimon Peres, and Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

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UPDATE - 1:50 p.m. - A few more calls, and the White House says this is it for the day.

Mr. Bush called French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.