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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

G7 Mulling Separate 'G8' Statement

TOKYO -- The Group of Seven leading industrial nations are considering issuing an extra "G-8" declaration at their annual summit next month to mark Russia's fuller participation in the elite club, a press report said Sunday.


They are making final arrangements to issue both a traditional G-7 statement and an unprecedented G-8 declaration at the June 20 to 22 summit in Denver, Colorado, the newspaper Yomiuri quoted Japanese government sources as saying.


President Boris Yeltsin will sit with his counterparts from the G-7 nations -- Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States -- from the beginning, unlike previous summits attended by Russian leaders since 1991.


U.S. President Bill Clinton told Yeltsin when they met in Helsinki in March that Russia would become the eighth member in Denver.


Japan has expressed reservations about Moscow's membership, and U.S. Vice President Al Gore has said Moscow would be excluded from key economic and financial discussions.


But Tokyo, which still balks at giving full help to Russia due to its territorial dispute with the former communist giant over the southern Kuril islands, has to follow the other six members that accept the G-8 formula.


The G-7 summits, which started in 1975, have culminated in economic and political declarations, often accompanied by chairman's statements.


The Japanese newspaper said the G-8 declaration at the Denver summit was expected to cover political and global issues, including regional conflicts, environmental protection, AIDS and terrorism, and "some economic issues."


But macroeconomic issues such as international financing, trade and development, Russia's participation in the World Trade Organization and aid to Russia will be discussed by G-7 leaders only, the daily said.


Results of these discussions will be embodied in a G-7 statement, Yomiuri added.