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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Japan Urges Caution on G-7 Growth

PARIS -- Japanese Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto has warned the Group of Seven leading industrialized nations against quickly expanding to a "Group of Eight" by admitting Russia or China to the elite club, a French daily has reported.

In an interview with French reporters in Tokyo, Hashimoto reiterated his opposition to Russian participation in G-7 economic discussions, the Le Monde newspaper reported Saturday.

"The G-7 must remain an organization of dialogue among democratic and developed nations," Hashimoto said in the interview, according to the newspaper. "Any new member's bid to join must be carefully studied."

G-7 heads of state are gathering Thursday in Lyon, France, for a summit. President Boris Yeltsin was invited, but is sending Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin in his place.

Yeltsin will remain in Moscow to campaign for the July 3 presidential election runoff

summit. Russian President Boris Yeltsin had been invited, but is sending Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin in his place.

on some -- but not all -- of the summit sessions.

rather than travel to Lyon. He said he was Hashimoto said he was sorry Yeltsin would not be in Lyon but pleased that the Russian leader would be spending the time campaigning, as a Yeltsin victory "will enable him to pursue economic reforms and democratization."

G-7 nations include the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Britain and Italy, in addition to Japan.