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It has been confirmed that Prime Minister Tony Blair is to get an email address later this month enabling people to contact him directly without having to put pen to paper.

The address is set to be published on pm.gov.uk in the next couple of weeks and will, no doubt, add a significant amount of correspondence to the 500,000 to 750,000 letters the PM currently receives.

In June, the Conservatives "named and shamed" the PM, claiming he was the only major world leader without a public email address.

The Tories lumped him in with the likes of Robert Mugabe and Fidel Castro (all leaders who don't have an email address) and taunted Blair that he was failing to live up to his rhetoric on e-government.

And in a stunt designed to make more mischief the Tories set up a Hotmail account - RtHonTonyBlairMP@hotmail.com - on his behalf.

At the same time, the Tories crowed that their own leader, "quiet man" Iain Duncan Smith, was contactable via the party's Web site.

In June, El Reg made use of this to ask IDS about the Conservative's plans to bring broadband to rural areas. We're still waiting for a reply. ®

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