Confidential transcripts released showing Tony Blair and Bill Clinton discussing Diana’s death

Transcripts of telephone conversations between former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and former President Bill Clinton have been released, including one where the two candidly discuss Princess Diana shortly after her death.

The transcripts, which were previously confidential, reveal how the two world leaders shared their grief after Diana’s life was cut short.

The two speculated on the causes of her death, with the “media frenzy” being referred to.

Mr Blair, who was British Prime Minister for ten years, told President Clinton “the country is stunned” adding “she was liked by ordinary people – it gave her problems with the royal establishment”.

Blair and Clinton also discussed their concerns for Prince William and Prince Harry, who lost their mother so young.

The transcripts were released on Thursday after the BBC made a freedom of information request to the Clinton Presidential Library.

The transcript in full:

President Bill Clinton: Tony?

Prime Minister Tony Blair: Hi Bill. It’s grim business, a very grim business.

Clinton: It’s awful, it’s really awful. We’re up here on Martha’s Vineyard vacationing, and we’re with a lot of people who knew her.

Blair: We saw her again just weeks ago when we hosted her for lunch with Prince William, he’s a great kid.

Clinton: Yeah, I worry a lot about those kids now.

Blair: She was such a rock of stability in the sense she conducted them with the outside world. The eldest boy, William, is quite like her in a way, he is very “feet on the ground”, he does things kids his age do.

Clinton: Well I feel so bad for her. She was just basically getting a hold of her life.

Blair: Thanks for your telegram yesterday and your kind words. The problem was the way she lived, in a press frenzy. It’s impossible to contemplate how intrusive it was, into every single aspect of her life. The last time I spoke with her, she said that were it not for the boys, she’s be off the board. The country is stunned.

Clinton: They liked her a lot, didn’t they.

Blair: She was not the royal family but she was liked by ordinary people, it gave her problems with the royal establishments.

Clinton: Well I know it’s a difficult time for you. I just wanted to let you know I was thinking of you.

Blair: I will personally miss her, it’s like a star falling. She was a star for them.

Clinton: What do they know? Is the British security guard who was with her still alive?

Blair: Yes, he is. And they may be able to offer some more information. There has been some talk this afternoon. They went to the hotel and thought they would be left alone. The Embassy and the French government did not know they were there. The media turned up, so they decided to go to dinner then on to one of the al-Fayed’s houses. When they got to their cars, it did not start. They called someone from the hotel and the hotel provided a car and driver. Apparently he’s been drinking.

Clinton: That’s what I was afraid of. Those guys were chasing them?

Blair: Jumped on them as they left the hotel, yes I can’t believe some of the reports on how fast they were going though. It’s just not possible they were going 100 mph – I mean, I know Paris. They wouldn’t have to be going that fast in those tunnels, though. They must have hit a rim in the road and turned over and smashed into a wall.

Clinton: It’s a sad thing I tell you.

Blair: Yes, someone we knew and liked. She had a remarkable gift. She was beginning to get her life together.

Clinton: Yes, Hillary had a nice visit with her a few weeks ago when she was here. We liked her a lot. I just think that anything you can do for those boys, I don’t know how [INFORMATION WITHELD]… in a situation like this.






Clinton: Hillary and I just want to tell you we are all thinking of you.

Blair: Your words yesterday were greatly appreciated. Thank you.