‘We must stick together’, Biden on Ukraine alliance – Times of India


ELMAU: President Joe Biden on Sunday praised the continued unity of the global alliance facing Russia as he and other leaders of the Group of Seven Leading Economies worked out a strategy to maintain pressure in their bid to isolate Moscow during the months-long invasion from Ukraine.
Biden and his colleagues met to discuss how to secure energy supplies and tackle inflation, with the aim of preventing the effects of the war from shattering the global coalition that is punishing Moscow. They would announce a new ban on Russian gold imports, the latest in a series of sanctions that the Club of Democracies hopes will further isolate Russia economically over the invasion of Ukraine.
Leaders also came together in a new global infrastructure partnership aimed at providing an alternative to Russian and Chinese investment in developing countries.
“We need to make sure we all stick together,” Biden said at a meeting ahead of the summit with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who holds the G-7 rotating presidency and hosts the meeting. “You know, we continue to work on the economic challenges we face, but I think we will get through this.”
Scholz replied that the “good news” is that “we all made it to stay united, what” Putin never expected,” a reference to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who sent his army across the border into Ukraine at the end of February.
“We have to stick together because Putin has been counting from the start that NATO and the G-7 would shatter somehow, but we haven’t and we won’t,” Biden replied. while he and Scholz sat on a terrace overlooking the picturesque Bavarian Alps.
“We can’t let this aggression take the form it has and get away with it,” Biden added.
Hours before the summit was officially opened, Russia launched rocket attacks on the Ukrainian capital on Sunday, hitting at least two residential buildings, Kiev mayor Vitali Klitschko said. It was the first such strike by Russia in three weeks.
Biden condemned Russia’s actions as “more of their barbarity”.
Other leaders echoed Biden’s praise for the coalition’s unity.
The head of the European Union’s governing council said the 27-member bloc maintains “unshakable unity” in backing Ukraine against the Russian invasion with money and political support, but that “Ukraine needs more and we are determined to do more.” offer.”
European Council President Charles Michel said EU governments were ready to provide “more military support, more financial resources and more political support” to enable Ukraine to defend itself and to “develop Russia’s ability to fight war.” to curb feeding”.
The EU has imposed sanctions on Russia six times, the latest being a ban on 90% of Russia’s crude oil imports by the end of the year. The measure targets a pillar of the Kremlin’s finances, its oil and gas revenues.
Biden and the leaders of Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan, plus the EU, spent Sunday in both formal and informal settings, including working sessions on the effects of the war on the global economy, including inflation, and on infrastructure.
Biden, who arrived in Germany early Sunday, said G-7 countries, including the United States, will ban gold imports from Russia. A formal announcement was expected on Tuesday as the leaders hold their annual summit.
Senior officials in the Biden administration said gold is Moscow’s second-largest export after energy and that banning such imports would make it more difficult for Russia to participate in global markets. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss details before the announcement.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the ban will “hit Russian oligarchs directly and hit the heart of Putin’s war machine”.
“Putin is wasting his dwindling resources on this senseless and barbaric war. He finances his ego at the expense of both the Ukrainian and Russian people,” Johnson said. “We must starve the Putin regime of its funding.”
Gold has been Russia’s most important export after energy in recent years — reaching nearly $19 billion or about 5% of global gold exports by 2020, according to the White House.
90% of Russian gold exports went to G-7 countries. More than 90% of those exports, or nearly $17 billion, were exported to the UK. The United States imported less than $200 million worth of gold from Russia in 2019 and less than $1 million in 2020 and 2021.
Among the topics to be discussed are energy price caps, which are intended to limit the Russian oil and gas profits that Moscow can pump into its war effort. The idea was championed by US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.
Michel said price caps for Russian oil imports are under discussion. But he said “we want to get into the details, we want to fine-tune … to make sure we have a clear understanding of what the immediate effects are” if such a step were taken by the group.
The leaders were also set up to discuss how to deliver on commitments to address climate change while resolving the critical energy needs arising from the war.
“There is no dilution of climate commitments,” John Kirby, a spokesman for Biden’s National Security Council, said on Saturday as the president flew to Germany.
Biden also plans to formally launch a global infrastructure partnership designed to counter China’s influence in the developing world. He had called it “Build Back Better World” and introduced the program at the G-7 summit last year.
Biden and other leaders will announce the first projects that take advantage of what the US sees as an “alternative to infrastructure models that sell debt traps to low- and middle-income partner countries,” Kirby said. economic competitiveness and our national security,” he said.
After the G-7 summit concludes on Tuesday, Biden will travel to Madrid for a summit of leaders of NATO’s 30 members to align strategy for the war in Ukraine.

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