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    Cameron: 'Coalition is strong'


    by ODN


    David Cameron has brushed off suggestions of cracks in the coalition with the Liberal Democrats.

    His comments came after Lib Dem deputy leader Simon Hughes warned that there must be no attempt to "unpick" the agreement between the two parties.

    Mr Hughes said there would be "trouble" if ministers in the Tory-Lib Dem alliance tried to go back on commitments such as the winter fuel allowance for the elderly.

    Unease among Lib Dems was fuelled by reports that welfare commitments - such as the £4 billion spent on winter fuel, bus travel and television licences for the elderly - could be axed, even though they were enshrined in the coalition agreement.

    Speaking to ITV News at the G8 summit in Canada, Mr Cameron said: "We have a coalition agreement and it is not just written down on pieces of paper, it's based on the two parties working very closely together, talking to each other, trusting each other, facing a very big challenge in Britain which is dealing with our deficit, and I believe we are meeting that challenge well.

    "Of course we are going to have to take both our parties with us. Of course, there will be arguments and frictions and noises from both sides. That's to be expected. But I think the coalition is strong and it is getting things done."