G7 foreign ministers meeting raises questions about US-Russia relationship

At their meeting on 10-11 April, foreign ministers of the G7 countries (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, UK, USA) discussed global security threats, endorsed nuclear disarmament and laid the groundwork for the G7 presidents’ meeting in May.

One of the topics of discussion was the situation in Ukraine – US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson mentioned that it is not clear to the United States “why it should care about the conflict”. After the summit, he immediately flew for a meeting to Moscow. In a joint statement after the summit, the ministers nevertheless condemned Russia’s actions in Ukraine and continuous violations of the Minsk agreements. Another main discussion topic was the situation in Syria. Tillerson condemned the use of chemical weapons, but still insisted that the US is only fighting terrorist organisations, not al-Assad’s regime, a Russian ally. Tillerson’s statements on both Ukraine and Syria reflect the US’ ambiguous position towards Russia – president Trump is in favour of a closer relationship, Tillerson and Defence Secretary Mattis are more cautious. US-Russia relations are currently tense due to US activities in the Black Sea. The ministers also examined the situation in Libya and North Korea.

About author: Nikola Blokešová

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