Asia
G7 sends strong messages to Russia & China

G7 sends strong messages to Russia & China

May 22, 2023

Hiroshima [Japan], May 22: The group of seven leading industrialized democracies (G7) sent strong messages to Russia and China following three days of talks in Japan that also saw a significant increase in support for Ukraine.
Despite depending on China economically, the leaders are also looking to take a tougher stance on Beijing's ambitions to expand its global influence.
Ukrainian President VolodymyrZelensky unexpectedly attended the summit in the city of Hiroshima in person, and at the close of the talks US President Joe Biden promised Kiev further military aid worth $375 million.
The latest package includes ammunition, artillery and armoured vehicles, bringing the total value of US military support to Ukraine to more than $30 billion since the Kremlin launched its invasion of the neighbouring country last year.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz underlined the G7's support for Ukraine for as long as necessary. While he said he did not expect modern fighter jets to be supplied rapidly, Scholz said a US announcement made on the matter during the summit indicated commitment to Ukraine.
His comments followed Washington's permission for the supply of US-built F-16 jets to Ukraine as part of a coalition of several allies.
The project is backed by Britain, France, Belgium, Denmark and Portugal. Initially, Ukrainian pilots are to be trained, with a decision due later on when and how many aircraft are to be delivered and by whom.
However, the Ukrainian air force was upbeat at the prospect. Kiev is counting on dozens of Western-made aircraft after Washington's concession, Air Force spokesman Yuri Ihnat told Ukrainian television on Sunday.
At the end of the three-day summit, Biden noted that Zelensky had assured him the aircraft would not be used to advance into Russian territory.
Host Japan meanwhile said that the G7 showed "unwavering unity" in support of Ukraine. Zelensky's appearance in person sent "a strong message," said Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.
French President Emmanuel Macron said he hoped that the presence of Zelensky would enable partners such as Brazil and India - both of whom attended the summit as guests - to better understand Ukraine's situation. Neither has so far clearly sided with Kiev in the face of the Kremlin's aggression.
When it came to China, described by British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak as "the greatest challenge of our time to global security and prosperity," the G7 discussed security and dependence.
In a summit declaration, the G7 states agreed to reduce their dependence on China and slash risks in their supply chains. The G7 also rejected China's claims to power in the East and South China Seas and warned Beijing about any military aggression targeting democratic Taiwan.
Both Russia and China strongly rejected the G7's decisions. "Look at the decisions that are being discussed and taken today in Hiroshima at the G7 summit, which are aimed at double containment of Russia and China," Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in Moscow on Saturday.
Source: Qatar Tribune