President & G7 leaders slam China & demand ‘transparent’ probe into origins of coronavirus


PRESIDENT Joe Biden and the leaders of the G7 summit have denounced China and demanded a “transparent” investigation into the origins of coronavirus.

On the final day of the G7 summit, the leaders collectively urged for a probe into COVID.

“We will promote our values, including by calling on China to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms, especially in relation to Xinjiang and those rights, freedoms and high degree of autonomy for Hong Kong enshrined in the Sino-British Joint Declaration and the Basic Law,” the leaders said, according to a communique.

They added: “We remain seriously concerned about the situation in the East and South China Seas and strongly oppose any unilateral attempts to change the status quo and increase tensions.” 

The push for a probe comes after the director of the World Health Organization, Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, told the press Saturday night that while talk of vaccine sharing among leaders at the G7 summit is encouraging, “we need more, and we need them faster.”

He said: “The challenge, I said to the G-7 leaders, was that to truly end the pandemic, our goal must be to vaccinate at least 70 percent of the world’s population by the time the G-7 meets again in Germany next year.”

Read our Biden live blog below for the very latest news and updates… 

 

  • TRUMP’S 2017 G7 SUMMIT WAS TENSE

    When Former President Donald Trump attended the G7 Summit in 2017, it was tense.

    One photo shows Trump sitting smugly with his arms crossed while German Chancellor Angela Merkel leans over to speak to him.

     

  • BIDEN AND JOHNSON EXCHANGED GIFTS

    The G7 summit is President Joe Biden’s first overseas trip as US president. He met with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday.

    The couples also gave each other gifts, with Boris presenting the US President with a photo of abolitionist Frederick Douglass.

    The PM also gave Jill Biden a collection of short stories by Daphne du Maurier.

    In return, America’s First Family gave Boris an American-made bike and helmet, while Carrie received a tote bag and a scarf.

    In a funny moment between the two leaders, Biden appeared to tell Boris “wait a minute” so he could greet the PM’s wife Carrie.

  • BIDEN AND MACRON SPOKE PRIVATELY

    President Biden and French leader Emmanuel Macron shared a private exchange of words during their first in-person interaction at the G7 summit on Friday.

    They will holf a more formal bilateral meeting on Saturday, the White House says.

    “The Leaders discussed a range of regional and bilateral issues, including COVID-19 and counterterrorism efforts in the Sahel, and affirmed the importance of the U.S.-France partnership and the Transatlantic alliance,” a spokesperson told CNN.

    “President Biden enjoyed a positive and productive first day of discussions at the G7, focused on ways we can collaborate to build a more inclusive and fair global economy.”

  • BIDEN TOUTS AMERICA’S ‘ARSENAL OF VACCINES’

    Biden said, “as long as the virus rages elsewhere, there’s a risk of new mutations that could threaten our people.”

    He pointed out that Covid weakens governments and noted that the key to going back to normal is vaccinating the people. He announced America would be the “arsenal of vaccines” and democracy.

    Touting America’s efforts in the fight against Covid-19, Biden confirmed that the USA would donate 800million of their vaccine doses to “supply the world by the end of June.”

    USA will buy half a billion doses from Pfizer to donate to 100 nations in dire need, Biden said.

    Biden said the USA’s vaccine doses don’t include pressure for favors.

    “That’s it. Period,” he said.

  • JOINT STATEMENT FROM BIDEN AND BORIS

    President Biden visited the U.K. at the invitation of the Prime Minister and in advance of the G7 Summit.

    They set out a global vision in a new Atlantic Charter and the main takeaways are below:

    Key points:

    • Democracy, human rights, and multilateralism
    • Defense
    • Science and technology
    • Trade and prosperity
    • Climate and nature
    • Health
    • Commitment to Northern Ireland

    You can read their joint statement here.

  • BIDEN FACES A BARRAGE OF CRITICISM

    Nile Gardiner, director of the Margaret Thatcher Center for the Freedom and Heritage in DC, wrote in the Telegraph that the formal warning was Biden’s “back of the queue” moment.

    It was a reference to Barack Obama’s jibe in 2016 when he warned Brits that the UK would be at “the back of the queue” for a future trade deal if the country voted to leave the EU.

    Mr. Gardiner said: “The arrogance of the Biden administration ahead of the G7 meeting in Cornwall has been nothing short of breathtaking. This is no way to treat America’s closest friend and ally.”

    Congresswoman Lauren Boebert suggested that the president “shouldn’t return home”.

    She said: “Joe, for once you and I are in total agreement. Don’t come home. Enjoy the UK! I really mean it. Have all the fish and chips you want. Follow your heart.”

    Pollster Frank Luntz told the BBC that America is being a “bit too loud” and should let the UK and EU resolve their differences.

    Credit: twitter/@laurenboebert
  • DANGER OF TRADE WAR

    This morning EU chief Ursula von der Leyen tried to cool the threat of a trade war by promising to show more “flexibility” on the sea border.

    The Commission boss said she’s “deeply convinced” a fix can be found but it will require the UK to start properly implementing checks.

    But a deal could be endangered by the increasing involvement of hardline Member States “expressing more and more worries” about a lack of controls.

  • BIDEN WAS DUBBED A “CAREER MAN” BY PUTIN

    Speaking on his 90-minute NBC News interview, Putin appeared impressed by former president Donald Trump and much less inspired when he described President Joe Biden.  

    “[Biden] is radically different from Trump because President Biden is a career man,” Putin said. 

    “He has spent virtually his entire adulthood in politics.”

    The statements come days away before Putin is set to meet with President Joe Biden at Villa La Grange along Lake Geneva on June 16.

    He did leave room for a chance of a detente between the two superpowers.

    “…it is my great hope that, yes, there are some advantages, some disadvantages, but there will not be any impulse-based movements on behalf of the sitting U.S. president.”

  • BIDEN COMMENTS ON MEETING WITH BORIS JOHNSON

    Biden said of his chat with Boris: “We affirmed the special relationship — that is not said lightly — the special relationship between our ­people and renewed our commitment to defending the enduring democratic values that both our nations share.”

    Boris said “the talks were great” and “went on for a long time” as Britain stole the march on the rest of the world to be the first to meet Mr Biden in person since he took office in January.

  • DOES THE G7 HAVE POWER?

    The group does wield some power, with prior decisions made at the summit influencing the rest of the world.

    Ahead of this year’s summit, G7 finance ministers agreed to back a global minimum tax of at least 15 percent for multinational companies.

    The group also stated they believe the world’s biggest companies should pay taxes where they generate sales – and not just where they are headquartered.

    Credit: Reuters
  • BIDEN PRAISED MACRON AT THE G7 SUMMIT

    Speaking at the G7 Summit on Saturday, President Joe Biden said: “The sun is shining, we’re on this beach, I’m well. And I’m with the president of France, that makes me even feel better.”

    “Things are going well and we’re on the same page.”

    Biden and Macron previously sparked attention on Friday when, after they posed for a family photo with other members of the G7, they walked off the beach location with their arms around each other.

  • BIDEN AND PUTIN WILL HAVE A LOT OF ISSUES TO TALK ABOUT

    A host of issues are on the table as the two men meet, including US concerns about Russian sabre-rattling on the Ukrainian border, the imprisonment of Kremlin opponent Alexei Navalny, and Putin’s support for Belarusian strongman Alexander Lukashenko.

    Biden also blames Russia for the massive SolarWinds cyberattack, election interference, and harboring criminals behind a spate of ransomware attacks.

    Washington has insisted for weeks now that its aim is to make relations between the two countries more “stable and predictable.”

  • BIDEN POSES WITH QUEEN AND OTHER WORLD LEADERS

    President Biden posed with Queen Elizabeth II and other G7 leaders ahead of a reception at the Eden Project in Cornwall.

    Biden was positioned two seats away from the Queen, who was sat center-stage surrounded by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and French leader Emmanuel Macron.

    Biden stayed back after the photo-op, speaking with Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi as the group walked back into the venue.

    Credit: AFP

     

  • G7 COMMITS TO SENDING 1 BILLION VACCINES TO POOR NATIONS

    Leaders of the G7 pledged on Friday to deliver more than one billion doses of the Covid-19 vaccine to lower-income countries on Friday.

    Those donations will be dished out over the next 12 months.

    Biden offered the largest number of vaccines, offering to buy and donate 500 million does of the Pfizer jab.

    British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called the pledge a huge step forward in helping to end the pandemic once and for all.

  • BIDEN IS 13TH PRESIDENT TO MEET THE QUEEN

    Biden is the 13th sitting US President to sit down with Queen Elizabeth II, 95, during her 69-year reign on the throne.

    The queen has met every American president since Dwight Eisenhower, except for Lyndon Johnson, who didn’t visit Britain while he was in office.

    She was a 25-year-old princess when she came to Washington in 1951 and stayed with President Harry S. Truman and his family at Blair House, where Truman lived while the White House underwent a major renovation.

    She met Herbert Hoover in 1957, more than 20 years after he left office.

    Her personal ties to US leaders underscore the importance of the United States to the United Kingdom and to the queen.

    Credit: AP
  • WHERE IS BIDEN STAYING?

    While the G7 summit is being held at the Carbis Bay Hotel the world leaders attending, including Biden and Johnson, will stay at the Tregenna Castle Resort.

    The castle was built in 1774 and became a hotel in 1871 and is now a Grade-II listed building.

    It sits in 72-acres and contains an 18-hole golf course.

    It was eventually bought by the Bolitho family.

  • G7 LEADERS TO SIGN NEW DECLARATION

    The leaders, whose three-day summit is scheduled to end on Sunday, are expected to commit to a new plan, called the Carbis Bay Declaration, to quash future pandemics within the first 100 days.

    The G7 nations are the UK, the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan.

    The British government said the guest nations were invited to take part in the summit as part of Mr Johnson’s Global Britain agenda.

    The expanded group can help the G7 intensify cooperation between the world’s democratic and technologically advanced nations, it added.

  • HOW MANY PRESIDENTS HAS THE QUEEN WELCOMED TO WINDSOR?

    The monarch has now received four presidents at Windsor, with the Bidens following the Trumps in 2018, the Obamas in 2016, President George W. Bush and his wife in 2008, and the Reagans in 1982.

    During her 69 years on the throne, there have been 14 US presidents.

    Her Majesty has met all but Lyndon Johnson.

    Mr and Mrs Biden met the Queen for the first time on Friday when she attended a reception for G7 leaders at the Eden Project.

    Both Mr. and Mrs. Biden, along with Emmanuel Macron, were left chuckling as Her Majesty cracked jokes during the event, asking them: “Are you supposed to be looking as if you’re enjoying yourself?” as they posed for a photo.

  • QUEEN WELCOMES PRESIDENT AND FIRST LADY TO WINDSOR CASTLE

    The Queen has welcomed President Joe Biden to Windsor with a Guard of Honour and tea at the castle.

    The American leader and First Lady Jill Biden visited Her Majesty’s Berkshire royal residence after attending the G7 summit in Cornwall.

    Despite the sweltering heat, the Queen stood as she awaited her guests, and was seen smiling at her guards.

    The Bidens flew in to London Heathrow on Air Force One.

    They greeted the Queen on a dais in Windsor’s quadrangle before a Guard of Honour gave a royal salute as the US national anthem was played.

    Mr and Mrs Biden put their hands on their hearts as the anthem rang out.

  • ‘DIPLOMACY IS BACK’ BIDEN SAYS

    In an apparent jab at Trump, President Joe Biden tweeted: “Diplomacy is back.”

     

  • BIDEN MET WITH ITALIAN PRIME MINISTER

     

  • KATE MIDDLETON AND JILL BIDEN MEET

    Kate, 39, and Dr Biden, 70, met for the first time as the pair visited a school to discuss child development at the G7 summit.

    The women were pictured at Connor Downs Academy in Hayle, Cornwall to highlight the issue of early years development in children – and what a picture they were in matching pink ensembles.

    The royal mom-of-three stunned in a fuschia dress by Alexander McQueen accessorizing with a L.K Bennett handbag.

    Meanwhile, the First Lady was elegant in an ivory fitted sundress which she paired with a hot pink blazer by California-based brand L’Agence.

  • BIDEN REJECTS JOINT PUTIN PRESSER

    Joe Biden said today he was avoiding a joint press conference with Vladimir Putin next week because he was not interested in getting into a “contest.”

    It comes after a US official confirmed Putin would be denied the opportunity to stand by Biden while answering questions from the press in Geneva on Wednesday.

    The White House is reportedly reluctant to grant Putin yet another prominent platform and place to put Biden at the mercy of comments made by his Russian counterpart. 

    Speaking at a G7 press conference in Cornwall, UK, Biden said: “This is not a contest about who can do better in front of a press conference or try to embarrass each other.

    “It is about making myself very clear what the conditions are to get a better relationship with Russia. We’re not looking for conflict.”

  • JUDGE HALTS BIDEN’S ‘RACIST’ $4BILLION COVID RELIEF PROGRAM FOR FARMERS OF COLOR

    A federal judge has halted President Joe Biden’s loan forgiveness program that aimed to assist disadvantaged ranchers and farmers of color.

    The order comes in the wake of a lawsuit by a group of plaintiffs that claims that the program is “racist” because it allocates aid solely to non-white farmers.

    Biden’s Covid relief program offers $4billion in loan forgiveness for farmers who are Black, Native American, Hispanic, or Asian. In April, the program became the target of a discrimination lawsuit.

    In response to the lawsuit, U.S. District Judge William Griesbach in Milwaukee issued a temporary restraining order on Thursday that suspends the program.

    Griesbach said the program allows the United States Department of Agriculture to provide debt relief to farmers “without actually considering the financial circumstances of the applicant.”

  • G7 LEADERS TO SIGN NEW DECLARATION

    The leaders, whose three-day summit is scheduled to end on Sunday, are expected to commit to a new plan, called the Carbis Bay Declaration, to quash future pandemics within the first 100 days.

    The G7 nations are the UK, the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan.

    The British government said the guest nations were invited to take part in the summit as part of Mr Johnson’s Global Britain agenda.

    The expanded group can help the G7 intensify cooperation between the world’s democratic and technologically advanced nations, it added.





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