G7 summit: Leaders to deal with migration, Africa, AI

Leaders from the Group of Seven (G7) gathered in Italy for their annual summit that is being held from June 13 to 15 this year.

Ukraine dominated discussions on the first day of the summit, with the G7 nations agreeing to a $50 billion loan for Ukraine this year backed by interest from frozen Russian assets. 

While technical details of the deal have yet to be worked out, the commitment by the group — which includes the US, Canada, Japan, Germany, France, Italy, the UK, and the European Union — shows Western resolve to meet Kyiv’s defense needs as it fights Russian forces.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz hailed the loan as a “very historic step” that sends a clear signal to Russian leader Vladimir Putin that he “can’t just sit this out.”

Scholz: ‘This is a very strong commitment’

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All G7 countries are expected to contribute to the loan and the cash should reach Ukraine by the end of the year.

Additionally, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who was also attending the meeting, signed a 10-year bilateral security agreement with the US on the sidelines of the summit.

Several other countries have similar long-term agreements with Ukraine, including Germany, France and the UK.

Zelenskyy also signed a security agreement with Japan, a country that has been a major financial backer for Ukraine as it fights against Russia’s military aggression.

rm/sri (Reuters, AP, AFP, DPA)