G7 leaders mock Putin at roundtable meeting in Germany
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Russian missiles rained down across Ukraine over the weekend while G7 leaders enjoyed the vistas offered by the idyllic Elmau, Bavaria. The Group of Seven assembled in Germany to discuss pertinent international issues, including Vladimir Putin’s continued assault on Russia’s neighbour. His country was once a member of the organisation, unlike China, which has not received an invite.
Why is China not in the G7?
G7 members are a selection of the world’s most wealthy liberal democracies.
France, Germany, Italy, the UK, the EU, Canada, Japan and the United States make up its present membership.
China has never received an invitation to join the group, as it has little in common with the other members.
The G7 is a primarily political grouping that joins nations via their shared international aims.
The People’s Republic of China operates under the exclusive oversight of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
The party’s constitution specifies it is a “people’s democratic dictatorship”.
That political composition runs counter to the other G7 nations, who elect their leaders, so China has not joined its ranks.
The G7 has consistently highlighted its differences with China by passing resolutions and economic policies designed to challenge the country.
Over the weekend, the nations announced an infrastructure plan that would commit them to raise $600 billion to finance developing countries.
Their “investment”, according to US President Joe Biden, would create a sustainable competitor to China’s multitrillion Belt and Road scheme.
Western countries have criticised the initiative for failing to benefit developing nations, alleging it would keep them in debt to China.
The G7 has also previously denounced China’s domestic and regional conduct.
During a joint statement issued by the group at the end of its 2021 meet-up, G7 members urged China to “respect human rights and fundamental freedoms”.
They highlighted reported human rights abuses of the Uyghur people, a local Muslim population resident in Xinjiang and its crackdown on Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters.
Chinese officials have denied mistreating the Uyghur people and denounced the statement as “slander” while demanding the G7 stop “interfering” in the country’s internal affairs.
While China is not in the G7, the country and now global pariah Russia sit on the G20.
The G20 is an economic alliance that meets annually to coordinate policy on global trade, climate, health and other issues.
Like the G7, the Group of 20 holds regular summits, with the next one due in Indonesia and championing global health architecture, digital transformation and sustainable energy transition as critical priorities.
There is no indication as to whether China or Russia will attend the meeting from November 15 to 16.
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