Canada’s Trudeau responds to Trump: Russia not welcome in G-7

Canada is opposed to Russia rejoining the Group of Seven (G-7) meeting, an idea proposed by President Trump over the weekend, because Moscow continues to disregard international rules, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters Monday, according to Reuters

“Russia was excluded from the G-7 after it invaded Crimea a number of years ago, and its continued disrespect and flaunting of international rules and norms is why it remains outside of the G-7, and it will continue to remain out,” Trudeau said during his daily news conference.

Trump on Saturday said he will postpone the G-7 gathering of leaders until September and said he would like to see Australia, Russia, South Korea and India participate.

He reiterated his idea of inviting Russia to the G-7 summit in a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday, the Kremlin said.

The Canadian prime minister did not answer if he would boycott the event if Putin were to attend, instead saying there were still “many discussions” needed before the meeting, Reuters reported.

Trudeau said the G-7 is a meeting for “frank conversations with allies and friends” and pointed to the Group of 20, which includes Russia, as a forum with members “we don’t necessarily have great relations with,” Reuters reported.

“The G-7 has always been a place for frank conversations with allies and friends who share so much. That’s certainly what I’m hoping to continue to see,” he said.

The G-7, a group of the world’s most advanced economies, consists of the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom.

Russia was excluded from the group in 2014 by former President Obama, after Moscow annexed the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine and in opposition from world powers. Russia still holds control of the territory.

Trump has come under criticism for his apparent close relationship and affinity for Putin. Most recently, House Democrats have called on the president to provide reasoning for donating ventilators to Russia worth up to $5.6 million, amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, saying the donation appeared to be for “political favors.”

Russia had earlier sent the U.S. 60 tons of medical supplies, including ventilators, with a price tag of just under $660,000, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). It’s unclear if the U.S. paid the cost of the supplies and the ventilators were never put to use.

Tags Barack Obama Canada Donald Trump G7 Germany Group of Seven Justin Trudeau Russia U.S. United States Vladimir Putin
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