UK’s Johnson, Trump, discuss potential of G-7 meeting

LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and U.S. President Donald Trump discussed the possibility Friday of meeting in person at the upcoming G-7 gathering in the United States — a session called into question by the global COVID-19 pandemic.

Trump said last week he’s considering holding a meeting in the U.S. with the leaders of the world’s major economies after all. Trump had scheduled the Group of Seven summit for June 10-12 at Camp David, the presidential retreat in Maryland.

Then in March, he canceled the annual meeting because of the pandemic and said that the leaders would talk by video conference instead.

The announcement was the latest effort by Trump to signal to the nation that the U.S. economy is getting back up to speed after shutdowns meant to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Johnson’s Downing Street office said in a statement Friday that the two leaders also discussed the importance of international cooperation to develop a vaccine for the new coronavirus, in hopes of restoring some sense of normalcy to global affairs.

Johnson invited Trump to take part in the Global Vaccine Summit that the UK is hosting on 4 June.

The two leaders also denounced China’s plan to impose national security legislation on Hong Kong, describing it as undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy and the “One Country, Two Systems” framework.

China officially ratified a plan Thursday to write a national security law for Hong Kong that would outlaw secession, subversion and foreign interference in the semi-autonomous territory. Critics say the move, which follows months of often-violent protests in the city, will effectively put an end to the core values that set the former British colony apart from the rest of China.

___

Follow AP pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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