G7 Will Not Consider Further Russia Sanctions

Kerry Wise
April 23, 2018

The G7 ministers also discussed the 2015 nuclear deal between six world powers and Iran and efforts to seek a supplemental agreement that would satisfy U.S. President Donald Trump's demand to "fix" what he sees as flaws in the deal, the senior State Department official said.

Group of Seven foreign ministers affirmed Sunday they will never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea and pledged to maintain "maximum pressure" on Pyongyang until it rids itself of nuclear weapons, Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono said.

A senior US official said President Donald Trump's administration will not make the same mistakes as those of his predecessors by pursuing incremental or phased approaches to denuclearizing North Korea. "It's something we've also been working closely with Canada on".

With Trump threatening to withdraw the United States if an agreement to revamp the deal can not be reached before the May 12 deadline set by the USA leader, Kono said "many ministers" sought "continuous and complete implementation" of the deal.

Trump has nominated Pompeo to be US secretary of state but Pompeo isn't in Toronto as his confirmation faces opposition in the Senate.

The foreign ministers meeting precedes a June summit in Canada of leaders of the G7 countries - the United States, Britain, Canada, Germany, France, Italy and Japan.

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Britain, France, Italy and Japan, will instead look for ways to keep pressure on Russian Federation, as well as Iran and North Korea, over their nuclear weapons programs.

The G7 meeting is the first high-level gathering of the allies since the United States, France and Britain launched 105 missiles targeting chemical weapons facilities in Syria in retaliation for a suspected poison gas attack on April 7.

Later Sunday, Freeland announced that she and the European Union's high representative for foreign affairs, Federica Mogherini, will co-host a meeting of women foreign ministers in Canada this September.

Freeland views the clash of the forces of democracy and authoritarianism as a defining feature of our time, and she has singled out Russian President Vladimir Putin as a major disrupter.

On Saturday night, Freeland and her Japanese counterpart Taro Kono signed an efficiency agreement which will allow each other's military troops to share equipment during joint exercises in Canada, Japan and elsewhere.

Acting US Secretary of State John Sullivan's first bilateral meeting was with Ukraine's Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin, and he "reaffirmed the United States' ironclad support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine in the face of Russian aggression".