G7 leaders defend summit after Trump disowns free trade communique

G7 leaders defend summit after Trump disowns free trade communique
UPI

June 11 (UPI) — British Prime Minister Theresa May called on the United States Monday to honor agreements that were made at the G7 summit in Canada.

The British leader echoed disappointment from other leaders that President Donald Trump first agreed to a communique for “free, fair and mutually beneficial trade” and the reduction of “tariff barriers,” but later tweeted he wouldn’t endorse the deal.

May said Britain will honor the agreement.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel called Trump’s action and behavior “sobering and a bit depressing.” She added she’s disappointed she couldn’t win him over to her point of view.

“The situation isn’t very nice,” Merkel said. “Sometimes I get the impression that the U.S. president believes that only one side wins and the other loses.”

Before he left the summit early to travel to Singapore to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, Trump suggested Russia should be allowed back in the trade group. Moscow was expelled from the then-G8 in 2014 after it annexed Crimea. Russian President Vladimir Putin said Sunday he supported rejoining the group.

Tweets from Trump en route to Singapore announced the withdrawals from the G7 communique.

Fair Trade is now to be called Fool Trade if it is not Reciprocal. According to a Canada release, they make almost 100 Billion Dollars in Trade with U.S. (guess they were bragging and got caught!). Minimum is 17B. Tax Dairy from us at 270%. Then Justin acts hurt when called out!- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 11, 2018

Why should I, as President of the United States, allow countries to continue to make Massive Trade Surpluses, as they have for decades, while our Farmers, Workers & Taxpayers have such a big and unfair price to pay? Not fair to the PEOPLE of America! $800 Billion Trade Deficit…- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 11, 2018

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his country “will not be pushed around on trade matters.” and called U.S. tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum “insulting.”

Trump called Trudeau “dishonest and weak” and hinted at additional tariffs on Canadian goods. Larry Kudlow, Trump’s chief economic adviser, accused Trudeau of undermining U.S. interests at the summit, calling Trudeau’s actions “a betrayal.”

French President Emmanuel Macron said the United States faces a “united front” on trade issues and found itself “isolated” at the G7 summit. He later said leaders should be “worthy” of their people.

“We have spent two days to secure a text and commitments. We are standing by them, and whoever turns their back on them shows their incoherence and inconsistencies,” an aide to Macron said.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said a united front by the other six G7 nations should be the response to Trump’s “America First” approach.

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