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G-7 Latest: Indian Leader Modi Set to Meet Zelenskiy in Japan

G-7 Latest: Indian Leader Modi Set to Meet Zelenskiy in Japan
The Atomic Bomb Dome at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima on May 18.

Group of Seven leaders discussed ways to ratchet up pressure on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine as President Volodymyr Zelenskiy is set to attend the summit in Japan, one of his highest profile trips abroad yet to raise global support. 

The leaders of the seven powerful democracies started their meeting in Hiroshima by touring a museum and peace park built on the site that was ground zero for the first nuclear attack 78 years ago. The visit was steeped in symbolism given Russian President Vladimir Putin’s periodic threats to use atomic weapons in Ukraine.

They finished their day with a trip to Itsukushima Shrine, a Unesco World Heritage site that has been a seat of worship for about 1,400 years, ahead of a working dinner. During the talks running through Sunday, they will also focus their attention on reducing reliance on China for key materials in global supply chains.

 

Latest coverage

(All times JST)

India PM Modi to Meet Zelenskiy in Japan (9:35 p.m.)

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to meet Zelenskiy in Japan, according to Indian officials.

It would be the first meeting between the leaders since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. India been one of the prime buyers of Russian oil and weapons, providing hard currency to Putin’s government at a time when the G-7 is seeking to starve it of funds.

EU Would Need to Back New Sanctions: Scholz (9:05 p.m.)

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said that the European Union would need to agree to any additional sanctions on Russia.

Speaking to reporters on Friday night, Scholz said sanctions should be more precise and targeted. He added that a fair peace in Ukraine is only possible if Russia pulls out troops.

Group Photo and Working Dinner (6:20 p.m.)

The leaders gathered at Itsukushima Shrine to walk the grounds and pose for a group photo in front of its vermilion-hued torii gate set in inland sea waters. They also held a working dinner where discussions were expected to touch on subjects including tensions in the Taiwan Strait and nuclear disarmament.

Sunset at 1,400-Year-Old Shrine Is Backdrop for G-7 Family Photo

 

G-7 Demands Russia Unconditionally Withdraw Troops (5:15 p.m.)

The leaders issued a statement after their session on Ukraine where they reiterated “our firm rejection of Russia’s illegal attempts to acquire Ukrainian territory by force.” They also appeared to take a stand against a cease-fire proposal by China, which sent a special envoy to Ukraine earlier this week, saying: “We underline that a just peace cannot be realized without the complete and unconditional withdrawal of Russian troops and military equipment, and this must be included in any call for peace.”

The leaders said they will work to restrict Russia’s access to their economies and cut off the flow of items that could be used for the Kremlin’s war machine. “We reiterate our call on third parties to immediately cease providing material support to Russia’s aggression, or face severe costs,” they said.

Ukraine Says It Shot Down 16 Drones (3:18 p.m.)

Ukraine’s military said it shot down 16 loitering drones and three missiles overnight, as Russia continued a campaign of airstrikes across the country before the G-7.

Two people were injured and an unidentified industrial enterprise suffered “massive destruction” in Kryvyi Rih, which Russia hit after midnight, Oleksandr Vilkul, the head of the local military administration, said on Telegram.

Ukraine Says It Shot Down 16 Drones, Three Missiles Overnight

Kishida Starts Formal Sessions with Unity Call (1:50 p.m.)

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida began the formal discussions by saying the G-7 must take a global leadership role as the world face multiple crises that include the climate, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and recovering from the coronavirus pandemic. He said a theme of the summit was confirming the solidarity of the group.

Ukraine Leader Zelenskiy to Visit Hiroshima (12:02 p.m.)

Zelenskiy will travel to Hiroshima to join the G-7 leaders in person, according to people familiar with the plans. Japanese officials had previously said Zelenskiy would join the others virtually, even while they added an extra session on Ukraine on Sunday to accommodate the Ukrainian leader’s schedule.

Over the past week Zelenskiy toured European capitals to make the case for more weapons deliveries.

Ukraine Leader Zelenskiy to Visit Hiroshima G-7 Summit in Person

Kishida Guides Leaders at Bombing Museum (11:55 a.m.)

Kishida, who hails from Hiroshima and has called nuclear disarmament his life work, guided the other leaders around the city’s Peace Memorial Museum. The museum displays the damaged personal belongings of victims of the 1945 atomic attack, as well as photographs and video testimony meant to convey the horrors of nuclear war. The leaders also met Keiko Ogura, one of the survivors of the bomb.

Emmanuel Macron

@EmmanuelMacron

Contributing to the duty of memory of the Hiroshima victims. Acting together for peace.

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Micron Deal Counters China ‘Coercion,’ Envoy Says (11:47 a.m.)

Micron Technology Inc.’s deal with Japan for financial aid to make next-generation memory chips sets a precedent for countering Chinese “coercion,” according to US Ambassador Rahm Emanuel.

The agreement, which Bloomberg reported would amount to about ¥200 billion ($1.5 billion) in incentives from Japan, has a “component of confronting China’s coercion and saying that America and Japan will act in unison to help us secure our supply chain and help companies that are targeted by China’s coercion,” Emanuel told Bloomberg Television in Hiroshima.

Micron-Japan Deal Counters China ‘Coercion,’ Rahm Emanuel Says

G-7 Restricts More Goods (11:29 a.m.)

G-7 nations have decided against imposing a near-outright ban on exports to Russia and will instead widen existing restrictions on key goods, according to people familiar with the matter.

The G-7 will instead broaden the list of banned goods to restrict items critical to Russia’s war in Ukraine, including those used on the battlefield, such as exports of industrial machinery and tools, according to the draft statement. The G-7 will also further target key sectors, such as manufacturing, construction, transportation and business services.

G-7 Restricts More Goods But Avoids Near-Total Russia Export Ban

Leaders Visit Hiroshima Bomb Museum (10:30 a.m.)

Leaders arrived at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, where they were greeted by Kishida and his wife before touring the facility that recounts the devastation from the atomic bomb dropped by the US that led to the end of World War II.

Bloomberg Politics

@bpolitics

WATCH: Kishida welcomes Biden and other G-7 leaders at Hiroshima’s Peace Park, the site of the 1945 atomic blast that destroyed the city trib.al/kFI0Imx

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EU Targets Russian Diamonds (10:15 a.m.)

The president of the European Council confirmed the G-7 and the European Union would work to restrict trade in Russian diamonds. “Russian diamonds are not forever,” Charles Michel told a news briefing in Hiroshima.

Michel said a main focus of sanctions moving forward was to close loopholes, strengthen enforcement and hit Russia’s revenues while not hurting Europe’s own economies.

On the G-7’s other big topic, China, Michel said a stable relationship with Beijing was important but the EU would be firm on fundamental rights. “We don’t want to decouple,” he said, adding the bloc wanted “to de-risk” dependencies and diversify supply chains.

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