After threatening Moscow with further sanctions over the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, the G7 leaders will come face to face with Russian President Vladimir Putin at D-Day commemorations in France.
Despite no scheduled meeting arranged, US President Barack Obama has said he would deliver a clear message to his Russian counterpart if the two meet.
“There is a path, on which Russia has the capacity to engage directly with President Poroshenko now – he should take it! If he does not, we have no choice but to respond,” warned the US president.
The G7 leaders said they were united in their support for the President-elect of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko and made it very clear what would lie in store for Russia if Moscow failed to act.
“I was impressed by the unity amongst the G7 countries on the fundamental principals – but also the specific set of things that mr putin must do right now and then the implications if he didn’t: the firm promise from the G7 that they would move swiftely to a next stage of sanctions,” explained John Kirton from the Munk School of Global Affairs
The G7 summit was not all plain sailing though. France has caused friction with its Western allies by going ahead with the sale of a powerful warship to Russia. They had called for Paris to keep the vessel out of Moscow’s hands.
“I have expressed some concerns and I don’t think I’m alone in the about continuing significant defense deals with Russia at a time when they have violated international law – I think it would have been preferable to press the pause button.”
James Franey, euronews’ correspondent in Brussels, said “G7 leaders are putting on a united front in urging Moscow to work with the newly elected Ukrainian president. But doubts remain whether some countries are willing to compromise their economic interests if Russia fails to do so.”