Canadian leaders oppose Trump proposal to reinstate Russian Federation in G7

Leroy Wright
June 12, 2018

"Something's going to happen. I think the president's made that very clear".

Before the president arrived at the summit, he criticized Canadian tariffs on USA dairy products, adding that he was "looking forward to straightening out unfair Trade Deals with the G-7 countries".

British Prime Minister Theresa May took a more measured tone, telling reporters she wanted the European Union to use restraint in retaliation against USA tariffs and that the response must be proportionate and legal. It was unclear if the technical talks were part of her initiative.

Robertson said there are other issues on which there will be agreement and the primary significance of these meetings anyhow is that "leaders get together and have those frank discussions". "It's highly unlikely there will be a final communique", a G7 official said on condition of anonymity.

The U.S. and the rest of the G-7 countries - Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan - depend on each other for security and as economic partners, so the governments will have incentives to find some common ground. The EU is also attending the summit.

"Looking forward to straightening out unfair Trade Deals with the G-7 countries", he wrote.

Following an exchange of terse messages before the summit, the two leaders struck a conciliatory tone with Trump saying that the relationship was special, but that sometimes tests occur when it comes to trade.

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Many Twitter users took up the challenge of a caption contest and offered alternatives to Merkel's straightforward description. National Security Adviser John Bolton and other aides also look on what appears to be a tense moment. The White House is expecting a chilly reception from Canada and West European countries, already frustrated over Trump's withdrawal from the Paris climate accord and the Iran nuclear agreement.

The chancellor also announced during Sunday's interview that, just like Canada, the European Union was also preparing counter-measures to Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs.

"Our position has not changed (on Russia)", said Adam Austen, spokesman for Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland.

The spat has financial markets anxious about tit-for-tit escalation. Under Trump, the United States has abandoned its traditional role in the G-7 as an advocate for freer global trade, instead pushing more protectionist policies. Canada and Mexico, the other members of the 1994 pact, have been frustrated by the slow pace of talks to renegotiate NAFTA.

Trump greeted Justin Trudeau, the prime minister of Canada, warmly at the official opening of the gathering.

But at the G7 summit in Canada, the physical bonhomie between the two leaders was pared back, signaling tensions that boiled over publicly just before the meeting.

Shortly before his arrival at the two-day summit, Trump injected additional controversy by suggesting that the G-7 offer a seat at the table to Russian Federation, which was ousted from the group after it annexed Crimea in 2014. "We will act", Ms. Merkel said.

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