G-7 summit ends with possibilities of Iran-US president meet; Russia’s re-entry as G-8

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BIARRITZ(FRANCE): The G-7 Summit under the French Presidency on Monday ended on a significant note with possibility emerging of a meeting between Presidents of USA and Iran in next few weeks as well as invite for Russia for next G-7 Summit in USA to be held in 2020.

President Emmanuel Macron of France said in a joint press meet with his US counterpart here that he would try in the next few weeks to firm up a meeting between President Trump and President Hassan Rouhani of Iran for a thaw in ties that could lead to new agreement with Tehran.

A meeting between American and Iranian leaders if that happens would be the first since diplomatic ties were snapped in 1979.

Macron, who said he had spoken with Rouhani, said that if the American and Iranian presidents met, “my conviction was that an agreement can be met”.

At the joint news conference at the end of the Group of 7 summit, Trump expressed openness to such a meeting without eagerly supporting it.

“If the circumstances were correct or right, I would certainly agree to that,” the US president said. “But in the meantime, they have to be good players. You understand what that means.”

Trump stated that Iran could be a “great nation” and that he was not seeking regime change. But he said that if Iran infringed on American national interests, “they’re going to be met with really violent force.”

The proposal to for Trump-Rouhani meet was announced after Iranian FM’s visit to this resort to meet French, German and British officials amid the presence of Trump in the same city.

Trump continued to be keen to revive G-8 as he suggested he might invite Russian President Vladimir Putin to next year’s G7 summit, which the U.S. will be hosting. Trump, when asked at his solo press meet if he has any concerns about the political implications of potentially inviting Russia to the G-7, said he does not care about what happens politically.

“I’m only thinking about the world and I’m thinking about this country … I think it would be better to have Russia inside the tent than outside the tent,” Trump said in his press meet.

Meanwhile on China Trump shifted his position on Monday, calling President Xi Jinping a “great leader” three days after branding him an “enemy” of the United States.

The shifting statements, Trump insisted, are by design. “Sorry. It’s the way I negotiate,” Trump said.

On ties with USA Macron informed that a “very good deal” had been reached on a new French tax on digital giants that the United States said unfairly targeted US companies. The GAFA tax – named for the Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon tech giants – became another point of contention between France and the United States when it was passed in July.

The summit as expected ended without a joint communique amid trade wars, re-entry of Russia into the group and climate change crisis including Amazon fires.

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