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Common challenges and growing threats on the agenda at the G7 foreign ministers’ meeting




Dominic Raab is set to discuss “common challenges and growing threats” with his G7 counterparts during face-to-face talks as the UK hosts the first meeting of foreign ministers in more than two years.

The foreign secretary will lead discussions on relations with Russia, China and Iran on Tuesday, as well as the crisis in Myanmar, violence in Ethiopia and Syria, according to the Foreign Office, Commonwealth and Development (FCDO).

This comes after Mr. Raab held talks with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in London on Monday, with discussions set to continue with Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday.

As the two countries establish a new relationship following Donald Trump’s departure from the White House, Mr Blinken said the US has “no closer ally, no closer partner” than the UK.

Nations including Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the EU will join the UK for talks on Tuesday, while foreign ministers will take part in a dinner discussion with the invited nations that evening.

Discussions are set to cover the coup in Myanmar, when Mr Raab will urge his counterparts to take stronger action against the military junta, before addressing the situation in Libya and the ongoing war in Syria.

Mr Raab will use Tuesday evening to outline a vision of co-operation between the G7 and Indo-Pacific nations to develop stronger trade ties, ensure stability and tackle climate change, according to the FCDO.

Ahead of the talks, he said: “The UK G7 presidency is an opportunity to unite open, democratic societies and to demonstrate unity at a time when it is very necessary to address common challenges and growing threats.

G7 Foreign Ministers Meeting
Mr Raab held talks with US counterpart Monday (Jonathan Buckmaster / Daily Express / PA)

“The addition of our friends from Australia, India, the Republic of Korea and South Africa, as well as the head of Assen, reflects the growing importance of the Indo-Pacific region for the G7.”

G7 ministers will invest $ 15 billion (10. 10.9 billion) in development finance over the next two years to help women in developing countries have job opportunities, build sustainable businesses and recover from Covid-‘s influences. 19.

They are also expected to sign new targets to introduce 40 million more girls into school and 20 million more girls reading up to the age of 10 in poor countries by 2026, the FCDO said.

But the commitments come as Raab faces continued criticism of foreign aid cuts, from 0.7% of national revenue to 0.5%, citing the financial impact of the pandemic.

The foreign secretary told a joint US-US press conference that aid cuts had been a “difficult decision” but that the UK still had room “to be an even greater force for good in the world”. .

Elsewhere, Mr. Raab held face-to-face talks at the Chevening House in Kent on Monday with Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi, where they spoke on trade, security co-operation and climate change.

Australia, India, Japan, South Korea and South Africa have been invited as guests as the UK seeks to deepen ties with the Indo-Pacific region.

Regular testing, size limits and other measures are promised to prevent the spread of Covid-19 during discussions.

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