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Donald Trump deepens G-7 divide with call to readmit Russian Federation

12 June 2018

The President said he had told fellow G7 nations that the United States requires fair market access and end to unfair trading practices.

While Italy's new premier Giuseppe Conte, head of a populist coalition, initially suggested he supports Trump's call, French President Emmanuel Macron assembled the European G-7 leaders before the summit and confirmed unanimous opposition.

According to media reports, even as late as Thursday afternoon, Trump was rethinking his presence at the G7 meeting, telling advisers that there would be no point in attending the event since the U.S. would be outnumbered on key issues.

Speaking to reporters earlier Friday, Trump said, "I would recommend - it's up to them, but Russian Federation should be in the meeting".

"We had a very direct and open discussion and I saw the willingness on all the sides to find agreement and have a win-win approach for our people, our workers and our middle classes".

The French president also noted that even if the USA insists on isolating itself from its allies, the Trump administration won't last forever - and Europe can chart its own course.

President Donald Trump's trade adviser says: "There's a special place in hell for any foreign leader that engages in bad faith diplomacy with President Donald J. Trump and then tries to stab him in the back on the way out the door".

He said he did not blame the G7 leaders for the "unfair" trade deals. "$800 Billion Trade Deficit..."

Amid the rising tensions, Trump was behind schedule in his arrival at the summit on Friday, forcing the postponement of a scheduled bilateral meeting with Macron.

In footage of the pair, Trump said of Macron: "Arm wrestling, he would be very, very tough".

Trump plans to leave the summit four hours earlier than originally planned to fly to Singapore to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the White House said.

British Prime Minister Theresa May on Friday warned both Trump and the European Union of the dangers of entering a tit-for-tat trade war over tariffs, urging both sides to instead focus on China's excess steel production.

His attacks have been widely criticized, as his desired trade punishments would both fracture America's relationship with its closest allies and hurt Americans economically.

Trump was reacting to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who said Saturday that Canada would retaliate for Trump's proposed new tariffs.

Trump is set to meet Trudeau later in the day.

Trump argued that Moscow was too important to isolate.

Donald Trump deepens G-7 divide with call to readmit Russian Federation