Washington: President Donald Trump said today he wants to use the G7 summit to resolve what he called unfair trade deals with US allies.
A Kremlin spokesperson meanwhile said they were interested in “other formats”, apart from the G7. Russian President Vladimir Putin is currently in Beijing, where he was presented with a friendship medal by Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping.
Fellow members of what was then the G8 suspended Russia after it took control of Crimea from Ukraine. Tensions remain, in part over the poisoning of a former Russian spy in the UK.
“Looking forward to straightening out unfair Trade Deals with the G-7 countries. If it doesn’t happen, we come out even better!,” Trump wrote as part of a blast of early morning tweets ahead of the meeting today and tomorrow in Canada.
Russia was expelled in 2014 following its annexation of Crimea, but Mr Trump said he wanted the country readmitted. But German Chancellor Angela Merkel said European nations there agreed it was not yet time to let Russia back in.
Russia is only one of the differences at the summit, with Mr Trump and other G7 nations disagreeing on several issues, most notably trade.But relations had already been soured by the US pullout from the Paris climate accord and the Iran nuclear deal.
But later Germany’s Angela Merkel said all the EU members there, including Mr Conte, agreed that Russia could not be readmitted unless there was “progress” on Ukraine. Canada too says it remains opposed.