AFP-JijiQUEBEC CITY (AFP-Jiji) — The G-7 summit ended in farce and a renewed threat of global trade war as U.S. President Donald Trump abruptly rejected the text of a consensus statement and bitterly insulted the Canadian host.
Just minutes after a joint communique Saturday that had been approved by the leaders of the Group of Seven allies was published in Canada’s summit host city Quebec, Trump launched a Twitter broadside from aboard Air Force One.
The U.S. leader left the meeting early en route for Singapore and a historic nuclear summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, only to take exception to comments made by Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at a news conference.
“Based on Justin’s false statements at his news conference, and the fact that Canada is charging massive Tariffs to our U.S. farmers, workers and companies, I have instructed our U.S. Reps not to endorse the Communique as we look at Tariffs on automobiles flooding the U.S. Market!” Trump tweeted.
“PM Justin Trudeau of Canada acted so meek and mild during our @G7 meetings only to give a news conference after I left saying that ... he ‘will not be pushed around.’ Very dishonest & weak.”
Earlier, Trudeau had told reporters that Trump’s decision to invoke national security to justify U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum imports was “kind of insulting” to Canadian veterans who had stood by their U.S. allies in conflicts dating back to World War I.
Trudeau said he had told Trump “it would be with regret but it would be with absolute clarity and firmness that we move forward with retaliatory measures on July 1, applying equivalent tariffs to the ones that the Americans have unjustly applied to us.”
The joint communique that was thrashed out over two days of negotiations vowed that members would reform multilateral oversight through the World Trade Organization (WTO) and seek to cut tariffs.
But Trump had already said he would not hesitate to shut countries out of the U.S. market if they retaliate against his tariffs.