World leaders have been arriving in Japan for tomorrow’s G8 summit, billed as a meeting on climate change but one that looks set to incorporate a range of other issues.
Rising food and oil prices and wider global economic concerns are threatening to hijack the hosts’ main target: agreeing to halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. On the economy, US President George Bush reiterated his commitment to a strong dollar, while on security he said concerns remain over North Korea’s nuclear program.
Speaking from the summit venue, Bush said: “North Korea did provide a declaration of its plutonium-related activities and did blow up the cooling tower of its reactor at Yongbyon. That’s been verified and that also is a positive step but there are more steps to be taken.”
While those attending the summit presented their agendas, thousands of G8 protestors came to champion their own causes. Marches took place in Sapporo, the closest city to the summit, some 150 kilometers away.
Twenty thousand police officers have been deployed to seal off the remote lakeside resort where the event is to be held and to avoid the violent clashes witnessed at previous G8 summits.