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The G7 foreign ministers are holding talks on “growing threats”, Russia and China

Russian President Vladimir Putin is viewing before the military parade on Victory Day in Red Square, marking the 75th anniversary of the victory in World War II, on June 24, 2020 in Moscow, Russia.


The foreign ministers of the developed countries of the Group of Seven (G-7) are due to meet in London on Tuesday to discuss the world̵

7;s most pressing geopolitical challenges, including Russia and China.

The United Kingdom has hosted G7 foreign and development ministers in the first face-to-face meetings since the start of the coronavirus pandemic and the group’s first meeting of foreign ministers since 2019.

Geopolitical issues that Britain said “threaten to undermine democracy, freedoms and human rights” will be on the agenda on Tuesday, including “relations with Russia, China and Iran, as well as the crisis in Myanmar, violence in Ethiopia and continuing war in Syria, “a government statement said.

“Russia’s ongoing malicious activity,” Britain said, including the build-up of troops on the border with Ukraine, the closure of opposition figure Alexei Navalny and the situation in Belarus are high on the agenda.

On Monday, British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab met with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken. At a news conference, they reaffirmed their common commitment to “maintaining transatlantic unity in defense of our common values ​​and in response to direct threats,” Blinken said.

Shared Challenges

The talks come ahead of a larger G7 summit in Cornwall in early June, attended by G7 leaders, including US President Joe Biden, who will make his first planned trip abroad since taking office. .

The G-7 is a union of the world’s most industrialized countries: Britain, the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan. The EU participates in all discussions as a guest.

Following talks Tuesday, the foreign ministers will hold a dinner discussion with guest countries Australia, India, South Korea, South Africa and Brunei as the current chair of ASEAN.

Diplomatic relations between the G7 and Russia remained strained after the annexation of Crimea by Ukraine in 2014, which led to the removal of Russia from the then Group of Eight (G8) and international sanctions against Russia.

Since then, Russia’s interference in the 2016 US election, an attack by nerve agents in 2018 in the UK, a cyber attack on US government and corporate networks and alleged interference in the 2020 election have prompted additional sanctions against the country. The Russian government has repeatedly denied all allegations.

Meanwhile, relations between the West and China remain deadlocked after the departure of former US President Donald Trump, but questions remain about the future of international trade.

International relations with Iran are also in the spotlight after the Biden administration said it was ready to negotiate a potential revival of the 2015 nuclear deal with the Islamic Republic. Trump withdrew the United States from the agreement in 2018.

“Growing threats”

The United Kingdom is currently the rotating presidency of the G-7, and Foreign Minister Raab commented that the UK presidency “is an opportunity to unite open, democratic societies and to demonstrate unity at a time when it is much needed to address the challenges shared. and growing threats. “

Tuesday’s talks will also cover tensions and escalating conflicts in other parts of the world, including the Myanmar coup. The United Kingdom has stated that it will call on the G7 to take stronger action against the military junta, including extending targeted sanctions against the junta; support for an arms embargo; and increased humanitarian aid for the country’s most vulnerable.

3. US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken (L) and British Foreign Secretary Dominique Raab (R) walk down Downing Street in London, UK on May 3, 2021.

Anadolu Agency Anadolu Agency Getty Images

The situation in Libya and the ongoing war in Syria are also on the agenda. On Tuesday afternoon, the group will discuss the situation in Ethiopia, as well as in Somalia, the Sahel and the Western Balkans.

The meetings in London take place as developed countries slowly resume personal diplomacy after a pandemic break; the last meeting of the G7 foreign ministers took place in April 2019 in Dinard and Saint-Malo in France.

The United Kingdom said Tuesday’s meeting was a crucial opportunity to revive personal diplomacy and, in addition to geopolitical issues, “will seek to establish a shared approach among the world’s leading democracies on equitable access to vaccines, to agree on global education goals. girls, strict climate finance targets and new measures to prevent hunger and food insecurity. “

The talks in London come ahead of the G7 summit in Cornwall on June 11-13, where British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will bring together leaders of member states, the EU and guest countries.

Security measures have been introduced for the London talks, including daily tests for coronavirus. All internal guidelines for social distancing will be in force, Britain said.

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