After signing the Safer Communities Act into law early Saturday, Joe Biden flew to Europe to participate in the G7 Summit. This year, the meeting is being held in the Bavarian Alps. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz is hosting the event, hence the location.
Biden is meeting with leaders of the United Kingdom, France, Canada, Germany, Italy and Japan. The summit’s participants are representatives of the “wealthiest democracies” in the world. The summit will last for three days.
Once Biden completes his meetings at the Summit, he will then head to Spain for a NATO meeting that takes place annually.
Some of the topics the leaders intend to discuss intend the global economy and a potential food shortage on a global level. However, American political topics followed Biden to Europe. He’s discussed the Friday Supreme Court ruling on a Mississippi abortion law case while at the G7, while also discussing American energy prices. Global energy prices are expected to be discussed by those at the Summit as well.
While the seven leaders were meeting on Sunday morning, Russian troops launched a missile attack on the capital city of Ukraine – Kyiv. This was the first time in quite some time that Kyiv had been attacked in such a way. The missiles hit a residential building. Biden was questioned about the attack early Sunday, to which he replied: “It’s more of their barbarism.”
One of the major topics of discussion for the G7 leaders involved unity, particularly where trade with Russia is concerned. “We have to stay together,” President Biden told Olaf Scholz as they met on Sunday. Biden and Scholz discussed that Putin desires for NATO countries and those in the G7 to “splinter.” Biden reiterated that so far, the members of NATO have stood against Putin in his invasion of Ukraine.
Putin appeared to be a top point of discussion among the members of the summit. Boris Johnson, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, and Justin Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada, joked regarding comment Johnson made about riding horseback while shirtless in the Alps. The pair were referring to a widely circulated photo of Russian President Vladimir Putin riding a horse in some snowy location while shirtless. Johnson said he wanted to appear “tougher” then Putin, while Trudeau joked that Johnson simply wanted to show off his physique.
However, all leaders present at the G7 summit said that they would agree to ban the import of Russian gold, which is a sizable piece of income for Russia. It’s the second largest export from Russia after its oil products.
On G7 summit administration official said that the leaders “should expect to see a series of steps that are designed to increase pressure in an ongoing way on Putin and Russia.” The official also related that this is only one of several steps the leaders will take in an effort to tighten economic sanctions and trade with Russia. The individual predicted more “in the weeks ahead.”
A surprising topic of discussion at the G7 summit dealt with the fact that, despite bans on Russian oil in most European countries and in the United States, Russia “has taken in record revenue” even in the face of Russian oil bans in these countries. The Center for Clean Energy and Fresh Air reported the revenue, but also said that the profit is due to the international spike in oil prices.
One topic G7 leaders are likely to discuss is the possible capping of the price that Russia exports. They would do this by setting a limit on what countries would pay for Russian oil.
Biden made remarks after his meetings, saying: “We can get through all this and come out stronger.” Germany is on the brink of a recession as well as an energy shortage. The country has always depended heavily on Russian oil for its energy needs. Russia has cut back on the amount of energy it pumps into Germany after members of the European Union laid economic sanctions on the country.