Latest Updates: G20 leaders meet in China

Latest Updates: G20 leaders meet in China

Hangzhou - The Latest: Top diplomats from the US and Russia failed to reach a deal to ease fighting in Syria, after government troops encircled rebel-held parts of Aleppo.



By Agencies

Published: Mon 5 Sep 2016, 10:12 AM

Last updated: Tue 6 Sep 2016, 9:18 AM

World leaders prepare to wrap up G20 meeting in China
World leaders gathering in China are set to wrap up the Group of 20 summit, which aimed to address sluggish global growth but seemed overshadowed at times by the US-China diplomatic rivalry, South China Sea tensions and Britain's exit from the European Union.
China had made trade a theme of the gathering in the lakeside city of Hangzhou, southwest of Shanghai, even as it faces complaints that a flood of low-cost steel exports are threatening US and European jobs, fueling demands for trade curbs.
China hopes its status as this year's G20 leader will increase its influence in global economic management. Chinese officials want the G20, created to respond to the 2008 financial crisis, to take on a longer-term regulatory role.
Obama and Putin agree to continue Syria talks
President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin have agreed to keep up negotiations over a cease-fire agreement for Syria.
That's according to a senior Obama administration official who would not be named discussing the private talks.
The official says Obama and Putin met for 90 minutes on Monday on the sidelines of the Group of 20 economic summit in Hangzhou, China.
Their discussion came hours after top US and Russian diplomats failed to seal a deal aimed at providing access to humanitarian aid for thousands of civilians in the war-torn country.
The plan would forge an unlikely US-Russian militarily partnership against extremist groups operating in Syria. The official says Obama and Putin clarified the remaining gaps in the talks, which largely involve how the deal would be implemented. The official says the two leaders directed their teams to meet again quickly, possible as soon as later this week.
US condemns North Korea's firing of 3 missiles  
The United States is condemning North Korea's firing of three ballistic missiles off its east coast during the Group of 20 economic summit in China.
The US says the tests and other recent ones like it violate UN Security Council resolutions, and also pose a threat to aircraft and commercial ships in the region.
American officials say they're consulting with allies on the proper response and plan to raise concerns at the UN. The US also plans to bring up the issue during the East Asia summit in Laos this week. President Barack Obama heads to Laos on Monday evening.
Obama and Putin hold meeting at G20 
President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin are meeting informally on the sidelines of the Group of 20 economic summit in China. 
White House spokesman Ned Price says more details about the meeting will be released later in the day. The meeting is taking place in private. 
Obama's meeting with Putin comes as the US and Russia are negotiating to try to reach an agreement to end the violence in Syria's long-running civil war. Top diplomats for both countries have thus far been unable to reach an agreement. 
Another likely topic is Ukraine. The US has been concerned about growing tensions between Russia and Ukraine. 
US-Russia talks on Syria end without a deal
The latest round of talks about curbing the violence in Syria have ended without a deal. 
A senior State Department official says Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov failed to overcome differences at a morning meeting. 
The diplomats have been trying to broker a cease-fire between Syrian President Bashar Assad's government and moderate rebels that would expand access to humanitarian aid for hundreds of thousands of civilians caught in the crossfire. The strategy has hinged on an unlikely US-Russian militarily partnership against extremist groups operating in Syria.
The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the private negotiations. 
US, France, Germany discuss Ukraine
The leaders of the US, France and Germany are taking a time away for economic talks in China to discuss the situation in Ukraine. 
The White House says President Barack Obama, French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit to review the status of the conflict. 
After weeks of intensifying fighting between government forces and Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine, a new cease-fire took effect last week and has been holding.
Reporters covering the summit had no access to the private meeting between the leaders. The White House said it would release more details on the talk later Monday.
Xi tells S. Korea he is against US missile system  
Chinese President Xi Jinping has told his South Korean counterpart that China is opposed to the deployment of a powerful US anti-missile system in her country. 
During their bilateral meeting on Monday's final day of the G20 meeting, Xi warned that "mishandling the issue is not conducive to strategic stability in the region, and could intensify disputes." 
China has responded angrily to Seoul's decision to base the US. Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, or THAAD, system south of the South Korean capital, Seoul. 
While Seoul and Washington say the system is intended solely to defend against North Korea's missile threat, Beijing says it will allow the US military to peer deeply into northeastern China.
Beijing's reaction has also stoked public outrage, threatening everything from tourism exchanges to appearances by K-pop stars in China.
Turnbull offers support to Britain in EU exit
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said his country is determined to provide its great friend and ally Britain with "all the support and assistance" it needs as it negotiates its exit from the EU.
Turnbull spoke ahead of a formal meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May on the sidelines of the G-20 economic summit in China. 
May said she was grateful to Turnbull who had offered to discuss a free-trade agreement with Britain shortly after she became leader in July after the British people narrowly voted to leave the EU in a referendum. 
May said she didn't want Britain to become inward looking. "We want to be even more outward looking around the whole of the world, and Australia, with our long standing ties and our close relationship, will be one of the first countries we will be looking to."
Russian, Turkish leaders meet to discuss Syria
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish leader Recep Tayypip Erdogan have met on the sidelines of the G20 summit to discuss both Syria and improving their countries' frayed relations. 
Russian news agencies on Sunday cited Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov as saying that both countries' delegations met and then the meeting continued between the leaders one-on-one with their foreign ministers present. 
Russia and Turkey suffered a roughly seven-month rupture in relations after Turkey shot down a Russian bomber on its border with Syria in November just as tensions mounted over Syria, where Moscow and Ankara back opposing sides in the conflict. Relations began improving in late June after Erdogan apologised for the plane's downing. 
Russian and Turkish officials discussed the outlook for lifting Russia's ban on Turkish food imports as part of their rapprochement process on Sunday, Peskov said.
French president wants 'regulated' globalisation 
French President Francois Hollande says he wants other world leaders to better regulate the global economy to protect workers and the environment.
In a Facebook post laying out his goals at the Group of 20 summit in China, Hollande said Sunday that "France's role is to contribute to regulating the planet." 
The socialist leader, whose country is known for its extensive labor rules, continued, "Our country refuses a globalisation without rules, where social models are pit against each other and dragged downward, where inequalities grow and intellectual property rights, and therefore cultural diversity, are threatened." 
Hollande argued against trade deals that don't respect worker rights. He hailed the US and China for approving the Paris climate accord and said he would champion "green" treasury bonds at the G20 to support environmentally sustainable investment.
 'Positive' Turkey-EU outcome possible: Merkel
German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she sees the possibility of a "positive outcome" to negotiations between Turkey and the European Union on a visa waiver for Turks, but that it will still take weeks of work.
The offer to scrap visas for Turks entering the EU was one incentive for Turkey to agree to a deal to curb the flow of migrants across the Aegean Sea. But it's conditional on, among other things, Turkey modifying its definition of terrorism and what constitutes a terror act to ensure that journalists and academics aren't arrested. Ankara has refused to make changes. 
Merkel said after meeting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan Sunday at the G-20 summit that they didn't discuss a precise time frame but "we agreed that there is still work to do." 
Kerry says some tough issues remain on US-Russia deal on Syria
US Secretary of State John Kerry says the United States will not rush into a deal with Russia to try to end Syria's civil war. 
Kerry has been negotiating with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in China on the sidelines of the G-20 summit. They are discussing a cease-fire between Syria's government and moderate rebels, and a possible US-Russian military partnership against extremist groups. 
Kerry says they've worked out many technical issues but others are unresolved. 
Kerry says he and Lavrov plan to meet again Monday. He says the US will take the time needed to ensure the agreement has the best chance for success. 
Several previous US-Russia deals on Syria have failed to halt the violence. 
Xi officially opens G-20 summit in China
Chinese President Xi Jinping has officially opened a two-day summit of the world's major economies, saying the Group of 20 should adopt new measures to generate growth momentum and avoid protectionism. 
The 11th G-20 economic forum takes place in the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou. 
Xi shook hands and posed for photos Sunday afternoon with leaders including President Barack Obama, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Russian President Vladimir Putin with a G-20 backdrop. The leaders then traveled up several flights of stairs to a summit conference room. 
In opening remarks, Xi said the world economy is recovering but faces multiple challenges in finance, trade and investment. 
He said the summit will discuss innovation-driven growth and more efficient global economic and financial governance. 
May wants 'frank and open' ties with Putin
In their first meeting together, British Prime Minister Theresa May has told Russian President Vladimir Putin that she wants a "frank and open relationship" with Moscow despite their differences.
 Bilateral relations have been strained in recent years by the fighting in Ukraine, Russia's backing of Syrian President Bashar Assad and the poisoning death of ex-Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko in London. 
At their meeting on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in China, May told Putin the world faces many challenges today. 
She said: "And while I recognize there will be some differences between us, there are some complex and serious areas of concern and issues to discuss, I hope we will be able to have a frank and open relationship and dialogue."
Erdogan wants common US approach on terrorism
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says there should be no distinction between "good terrorists" and bad ones. 
Erdogan is meeting with President Barack Obama on the sidelines of the Group of 20 economic summit in Hangzhou, China. 
Erdogan says all terrorism is bad. He says the US and Turkey must adopt a common attitude against terrorism. 
Turkey and the US have been at odds over the role of Kurdish forces in fighting the Islamic State group in Syria. US backed Syrian Kurds have been the most effective fighting force against Deash, but Turkey worries they are seeking a contiguous and autonomous zone along Turkey's border.
Obama vows support for Erdogan after failed coup
President Barack Obama is reassuring Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that the US will work to ensure those responsible for a failed coup are brought to justice. 
Obama is holding his first meeting with Erdogan since this summer's coup attempt. Obama says he condemns the attempted overthrow. 
The US president also says it's critical to "finish the job" of securing Turkey's border with Syria. That's where Islamic State fighters have flooded into Turkey and would-be recruits into Syria. 
Obama also says Turkey mustn't carry alone the burden of addressing the Syrian refugee crisis. 
The leaders met on the sidelines of the Group of 20 economic summit in Hangzhou, China.
Tusk says no Brexit talks until UK tells EU  
European Council President Donald Tusk says there will be no negotiations with Britain on the terms of its departure from the European Union until London formally invokes the two-year leaving process. 
Speaking ahead of the G-20 summit in Hangzhou, China, Tusk said such pre-negotiations are not in the interests of the remaining 27 EU members. 
Tusk says: "We need to protect the interests of the members of the EU that want to stay together, not the one which wants to leave." 
Speaking earlier Sunday, British Prime Minister Theresa May said: "There will be no second referendum, no attempt to turn the clock back or get out of this. (Britain) will be leaving the European Union." 
The UK has to invoke Article 50, the EU treaty clause that sets up the departure of a nation from the current 28-member bloc.
The Brexit, as it's known, is one of the main topics of concern at the economic forum.
Obama says he wouldn't 'overcrank' media spat
President Barack Obama says he doesn't think disputes over media access during his trip to China reflect trouble in the US-China relationship. 
Obama says tensions always arise when the White House negotiated how much access the US press will get to the president and foreign leaders overseas. 
The White House doesn't apologize for pushing to press access because "we don't leave our values and our ideals behind when we take those trips." 
But Obama says he wouldn't "overcrank" the significance of a shouting match that broke out between White House and Chinese officials as he arrived in China Saturday.
May says no 2nd Brexit referendum
British Prime Minister Theresa May says there will be "no second referendum" in the U.K. on exiting the European Union. She says the U.K. will be leaving the EU.
May is meeting with President Barack Obama in China. She says the U.K. plans to continue pursuing an aggressive trade relationship with the U.S. despite the decision to leave the EU.
May and Obama are downplaying concerns that Britain becomes a lower trading priority for the US by leaving the European bloc. The U.S. has been negotiating a broad EU trade deal and said ahead of the Brexit vote that Britain would go to the back of a line for a two-country deal if it left the EU. 
Obama says he never said Britain would be punished. But he says it wouldn't make sense for the US to lose focus on its European trade talks. He says the first priority for Britain now that it's leaving is to figure out its new trading relationship with its European neighbours.
Obama says working with Russia on Syria deal
President Barack Obama says US and Russian negotiators are working "around the clock" to try to strike a deal to reduce violence in Syria but says "we're not there yet." 
Obama is addressing the Syria crisis during a meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in China. 
Obama says the US is skeptical given the fact that previous cessations of hostilities have failed to hold. He says the negotiations are difficult and the U.S. and Russia have "grave differences." 
But Obama says it's "worth trying" given Russia's role in supporting Syrian President Bashar Assad. 
Obama says UK ties to strengthen despite Brexit
President Barack Obama says the US and the UK will continue strengthening their "special relationship" even as Britain pursues its exit from the European Union.
Obama is holding his first meeting with new British Prime Minister Theresa May since she took over. He says the US doesn't have a stronger partner in the world. Obama says the two countries will keep cooperating closely on cyber security, terrorism and trade despite the "turbulence" of recent political events. He's referring to the British vote to exit the EU, or Brexit. 
May says the UK and the US will "pursue the opportunities that Brexit presents." She says they'll "make a success of it."


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