EU balks at Russia returning to G7 after Trump summit invite

Leaders leave the podium after a group photo at the G7 Summit in the Ancient Theatre of Taormina ( 3rd century BC) in the Sicilian citadel of Taormina, Italy, on Friday, May 26, 2017. (AP)

The European Union views the Group of Seven format as a vital multilateral framework that cannot be changed on a permanent basis by the chair of the group, currently the United States, an EU spokesman said on Tuesday.

US President Donald Trump on Saturday dismissed the G7 as a "very outdated group of countries" and said he would expand the list of invitees to include Australia, Russia, South Korea and India.

"Russia’s participation in the G8 has been suspended until Russia changes course and the environment allows for the G8 to again have a meaningful discussion. This is not currently the case," the spokesman said. Russia was ejected from the group after annexing Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.

Trump said Saturday he would postpone the G7 conference.

“I’m postponing it because I don’t feel that as a G7 it properly represents what’s going on in the world,” Trump said.

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Last Update: Tuesday, 02 June 2020 KSA 21:45 - GMT 18:45