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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Summit Issues Call To Battle Terrorism

LYON, France -- World leaders were set to pledge an all-out war on terrorism at the start of the annual summit of the Group of Seven leading industrialized nations Thursday in the wake of a devastating bomb attack on U.S. soldiers in Saudi Arabia.

French President Jacques Chirac, the summit's host, and U.S. President Bill Clinton agreed that the G-7 leaders should issue a joint statement after their opening dinner on Thursday voicing determination to fight terrorism, French spokeswoman Catherine Colonna said.

Chirac expressed France's sorrow and condolences to Clinton on what he called a cowardly truck bomb attack on a Saudi military base on Tuesday in which 19 Americans were killed and nearly 400 people injured, she said.

Speaking earlier in the village of Perouges, near Lyon, Clinton called terrorist violence one of the major threats to liberty in the post-Cold War world.

"We must rally the forces of tolerance and freedom everywhere to work against terrorism, just as we are working for peace in Bosnia today with the strong leadership of France and of President Chirac," he said.

Clinton said he hoped the Group of Seven would approve 40 recommendations prepared by experts to combat terrorism, organized crime, drugs trafficking and nuclear smuggling.

The recommendations prepared by experts since last year's G-7 summit in Halifax, Canada, include measures to increase police and intelligence cooperation to stem the flow of weapons and funds to outlaws and make it harder for them to cross borders with fake identity documents, French officials said.

Officials forecast sharp debate on U.S. legislation to punish trade with what Washington regards as "rogue nations" such as Iraq, Iran, Cuba and Libya. The other G-7 countries strongly oppose such embargoes.

Leaders of the major industrial democracies are due to focus on Friday on the breakneck pace of economic globalization and its impact on jobs, welfare systems, financial markets and the developing countries.

They are also expected to discuss a major debt relief package for the world's 40 poorest nations, call for the continuation of economic reform in Russia whatever the outcome of next week's presidential election run-off, and debate how to turn the end of the war in Bosnia into real civil peace.

The summit's economic declaration will be issued Friday before Russian Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin joins other leaders for political talks. President Boris Yeltsin had been due to attend but stayed home because of presidential elections July 3.