Ed Miliband met Barack Obama, but what's in the bag?

Ed Miliband got his meeting and resulting photo opportunity with Barack Obama yesterday, but people were more immediately concerned with the contents of what appeared to be a plastic bag from the House of Commons gift shop.

Amid fears the Labour leader and his team had brought the leader of the free world a bottle of speaker John Bercow's whisky a spokesman later clarified that actually the US president was the recipient of some classic British DVDs.

Mr Obama is now the proud owner of the original House Of Cards, recently remade by Netflix in a Washington DC setting with Kevin Spacey, 2003's State Of Play - also adapted, this time into a Hollywood blockbuster starring Russell Crowe - and The State Within.

(Picture: Labour press team)

An aide to Mr Miliband said: "Given the number of US political dramas on our screens we thought we would showcase a few British-made examples."

Yesterday's 25-minute encounter reflected the protocol of such occasions.

Officially, Mr Miliband was meeting US national security adviser Susan Rice, but Mr Obama did a "drop by" so they could meet away from the Oval Office; the same treatment accorded then leader of the opposition David Cameron by George W Bush in 2007.

The Labour leader and the US president discussed the MH17 plane crash, the wider situation in Ukraine, the Israel-Gaza conflict, Britain's membership of the EU and the Scottish independence referendum.

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