G7, NATO, two summits to maintain unity vis-.-Vis Russia

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Keeping up with Moscow: Western leaders are expected to rally in the coming crucial G7 and subsequent NATO summits as the war in Ukraine continues, threatening to test their unity.

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The leaders of the great powers, including US President Joe Biden, have been meeting since Sunday in the Bavarian Alps for the annual meeting of the Group of Seven (G7) most industrialized nations, which consists of Germany and Canada. France, Italy, Japan, Britain and the USA.

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Continued support for Ukraine, four months after the Russian invasion of the country, will be the focus of this summit and then of the two-day NATO summit in Madrid from 28 June.

German Chancellor Olaf Soltz, who is hosting the G7 summit, recalled this week that support for Ukraine would require “persistence” as “we are still a long way from” holding talks between Kyiv and Moscow.

“Russia’s attack has made the seven countries realize that they need each other,” said Stephen Meister, a researcher at the German research institute DGAP. community.

The war in Ukraine could last “years”, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned.

– The Alliance is dusting off –

Leaders are likely to discuss Olaf Soltz’s call this week for a “Marshall Plan” to rebuild Ukraine, a long-term plan that will cost “billions” and “generations”.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is expected to call for more weapons and pressure on Russia in a televised address Monday at the G7 summit at the Elmau Tower in the foothills of the Alps.

Zelensky will also address the summit of the 30 NATO member states, the last stage of intense diplomatic activity, which began yesterday, Thursday, with the summit of EU leaders in Brussels, at which Ukraine received candidate status for membership in the EU.

The Atlantic Alliance is expected to unveil plans to protect its eastern wing, which is close to Russia.

This defense reinforcement will be accompanied by a new “strategic concept” – the first revision of the alliance’s roadmap in 10 years – which is expected to harden its stance on Russia and address for the first time the challenges posed by China.

Turkey’s exclusion of Sweden and Finland’s candidacies overshadows the expected show of unity among the allies.

– Regression for the climate? –

In order to “maintain a steady course” towards Russia, there should be no retreat in terms of financial sanctions, nor military and financial support in Kyiv, said Solz, who, however, criticized the delay in the delivery of heavy weapons to Ukraine .

After several rounds of sanctions, “we are on the verge, especially of energy sanctions,” which have “high costs for the G7 and the global economy,” Stephen Meister said.

Berlin accuses Moscow of significantly reducing gas supplies to trigger an energy crisis in Europe ahead of a tense winter ahead. At the same time, the spike in food prices is affecting many areas.

In this context, the participation in the G7 summit of Indonesia, India, Senegal, South Africa and Argentina sends an important message.

“It is crucial to convince many non-Western countries that are wary of sanctions that the West is addressing their concerns,” said Thorsten Brenner, director of the Global Public Policy Institute.

India, Senegal and South Africa abstained from voting on a UN resolution condemning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

These emerging economies are particularly vulnerable to food shortages and the climate crisis, two emergencies that are also on the list of large demonstrations scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday, in Munich at the request of international non-governmental organizations.

“I’m very concerned about a possible setback from the G7 ‘s commitment to end international financing of fossil fuels,” warns Christoph Bals, political director of Germanwatch.

The food, debt and climate crises have “the same roots: our dependence on fossil fuels,” said Lawrence Toumpiana, one of the architects of the Paris Agreement, urging the G7 to “plan for their complete elimination.”

Source: Capital

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