Trump torpedoes G7 bid to end trade spat

Trump torpedoes G7 bid to end trade spat

President Donald Trump's top economic adviser says Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau "really kind of stabbed us in the back" when Trudeau said at the end of the Group of Seven summit that Canada wouldn't be pushed around by the USA and its trade tariffs.

Earlier in the evening, Trump tweeted that Canadian prime minster Justin Trudeau was "meek" and "mild" and that his statements were "false".

Trudeau has used the word "insulting" several times in the last couple of weeks to describe Trump's tariffs, as the prime minister has taken issue with the fact they're being applied on the premise that Canada poses a national security threat to the U.S.

"I highlighted directly to the president that Canadians did not take it lightly that the United States has moved forward with significant tariffs", said Trudeau.

Earlier on Saturday, Trudeau said that the Group of Seven members managed to coordinate the final communique of the summit that had ended in La Malbaie, Canada.

Trump's attendance at the G7 gathering comes amid tensions over new steel and aluminum tariffs the U.S. has imposed on some of its closest allies, including the European Union and summit host Canada.

"International cooperation can not depend on being angry and on sound bites. It is impossible to predict what Trump will do next", said a senior G7 official on the summit outcome.

Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska, a Nebraska Republican, said in a statement: "If the president is actually serious about leading the expansion of a G-7 no-tariff, free-trade agreement, that's tremendous, tremendous news - for the USA and for the free nations of the world".

President Donald Trump's chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow on Sunday accused Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of undermining the USA and its allies with comments he made at the G7 summit. In a Twitter post on Saturday, Trump said Conte would visit Washington "shortly" and said: "He will do a great job - the people of Italy got it right!"

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Vice President Mike Pence told Trudeau he would have to agree to that before Trump would agree to meet him.

Tensions between the U.S. and its G7 partners over trade and the USA withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal were rife in the face of the summit which had been dubbed by some as "G6 plus one", referring to an isolated US.

Trump was reacting to comments made by Trudeau on Saturday in which he threatened to torpedo negotiations on a new NAFTA deal if the Americans did not remove tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum. We have seen this with the climate agreement or the Iran deal.

"In a matter of seconds, you can destroy trust with 280 Twitter characters", German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said when asked about Trump's U-turn.

As Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale observed, Trump spent much of the G7 summit "painting a highly inaccurate tariff picture-wrongly suggesting everyone else has high tariffs while USA has none".

"The action which Canada has objected to, and will continue to object to very strongly, was the illegal and unjustified imposition of tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum".

G7 members Germany and France said they stood by the communique despite Trump's decision.

Trudeau's office responded to the verbal attack in a statement saying that the PM did nothing to provoke an outburst from Trump.

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