Merkel says expects 'difficult discussions' at G7 summit

09 June, 2018, 23:46 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • Dialogue with Rome but respect EU rules (3)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel says that she expects "difficult discussions" at the Group of Seven summit in Canada later this week.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday warned that leaders would face hard discussions at the upcoming G7 summit in Canada, and called on countries to avoid watering down previous conclusions on contentious issues such as trade. She said Russia's removal was "unavoidable".

In addition to the disruptive effects of the rift in NATO and Trump's exit from the Paris global climate treaty, Merkel pointed to the fresh conflict over trade and the US leader's withdrawal from the Iran nuclear accord last month.

Merkel told lawmakers on Wednesday that Germany will work to ensure that the summit's communique doesn't fall below what was agreed at last year's G-7 and Group of 20 summits. AfD lawmaker Michael Espendiller asked whether the G-8 format including Russian Federation, which was thrown out after Moscow's annexation of Crimea from Ukraine, should be revived.

However, she added that "we must not keep watering down" previous summit conclusions committing the G7 countries to fair multilateral trade and rejecting protectionism.

"I will of course try to speak to the USA president about the current problems that we have overall, in particular on Iran and on trade tariffs", Merkel told the Bundestag lower house of parliament.

Xi, Modi Hold Bilateral Talks in China, Agree to Improve Ties
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"Dialogue is always important", she said during a question and answer session with German lawmakers.

She also noted that Germany has sought to keep in frequent contact with Russian Federation, but said "a format that is explicitly based on respecting worldwide law is not viable for Russian Federation at present".

German chancellors have not previously interacted directly with MPs in the same way British prime ministers do at their weekly question time.

Merkel will now face questions three times a year, though some opposition lawmakers complain that the format is too inflexible and the event appears highly unlikely to emulate the bear-pit atmosphere of question time in London.

Germany has long sought a permanent seat.

Responding to questions by lawmakers at a special session of the parliament, Merkel said issues that divide Washington and its European partners, including the nuclear deal with Iran and USA trade tariffs, will be among the issues she will raise in her bilateral talks.

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