Trump: It’s ‘common sense’ to invite Putin to G7

The US president also announced plans late last month to expand the G7 to include four additional nations.

Trump: It’s ‘common sense’ to invite Putin to G7

President Donald Trump on Wednesday defended his push to re-invite Russia to the Group of Seven summit later this year — arguing that President Vladimir Putin’s inclusion at the annual meeting of the most economically advanced countries is a matter of “common sense.”

“He’s not there. Half of the meeting is devoted to Russia, and if he was there, it’d be much easier to solve. He used to be,” Trump told “Fox and Friends” co-host Brian Kilmeade on his Fox News radio show.

The problem is, many of the things that we talk about are about Putin, so we’re just sitting around wasting time because then you have to finish your meeting and somebody has to call Putin or deal with Putin on different things,” the president added. “And I say, have him in the room. Have him in the room.”

Trump late last month announced plans to expand the G7 to include four additional nations — Australia, India, Russia and South Korea — and indicated he would postpone this year’s summit, which the United States is scheduled to host, until sometime before November’s general election.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have both expressed their opposition to the readmission of Russia, which was suspended from what was previously the Group of Eight after illegally annexing Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.

Trump has repeatedly blamed Russia’s exclusion from the group on former President Barack Obama, and said Wednesday his White House predecessor “got taken over to the cleaners” and “had his pockets picked” by Putin during diplomatic dealings.

Trump also said that while “it’s not a question of what [Putin has] done,” he suggested the Russian president partly earned a seat at the group’s table for having “helped us with the oil industry, which was good for him, too.”

OPEC, Russia and other oil-producing nations in April finalized an unprecedented production cut of nearly 10 million barrels in a bid to boost crashing prices amid the coronavirus pandemic and a price war.

On Wednesday, OPEC leader Saudi Arabia and Russia agreed to a preliminary deal to extend existing output cuts while raising pressure on countries with poor compliance to deepen their reductions, Reuters reported.

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Snap to stop promoting Trump’s account because of threats against protesters

'We will not amplify voices who incite racial violence and injustice by giving them free promotion on Discover,' the company said.

Snap to stop promoting Trump’s account because of threats against protesters

The multimedia messaging app Snapchat said it will stop promoting U.S. President Donald Trump’s account to other users because of the threats he has made on other social media platforms about unleashing violence against protesters.

The decision, which the company made over the weekend and announced Wednesday, may be one of the strongest stances yet from a social media company as the industry grapples with how to handle incendiary remarks from the country’s most powerful leader.

Snap’s action is notably stronger and more sweeping than the fact-checking and warning labels Twitter slapped on Trump’s account last week, especially because Snap is reacting to statements the president has made elsewhere. And it comes from a platform that is popular among millennials and other young users.

“We will not amplify voices who incite racial violence and injustice by giving them free promotion on Discover,” the company said in a statement. The action applies to Snap’s “Discover” feature, a curated section of the app that allows people to find the accounts of celebrities, news organizations and other prominent users.

“Racial violence and injustice have no place in our society and we stand together with all who seek peace, love, equality, and justice in America,” the company continued.

No other platform has taken action based on Trump’s rhetoric elsewhere online. Twitter, for instance, labeled one of his tweets as “glorifying violence” for containing the phrase “when the looting starts, the shooting starts,” and before that it placed fact-checking notices on two of his tweets alleging widespread fraud in mail-in voting.

Facebook, in contrast, has declined to take any action on the same words posted to its platform.

Snap made its decision after a tweet on Saturday in which the president remarked, in part, that any demonstrators who intruded onto the White House grounds would be “greeted with the most vicious dogs and ominous weapons, I have ever seen.”

Snap CEO Evan Spiegel wrote in a blog post the following day that the company “simply cannot promote accounts in America that are linked to people who incite racial violence, whether they do so on or off our platform.”

The New York Times first reported Snap’s decision.

This article is part of POLITICO’s premium Tech policy coverage: Pro Technology. Our expert journalism and suite of policy intelligence tools allow you to seamlessly search, track and understand the developments and stakeholders shaping EU Tech policy and driving decisions impacting your industry. Email with the code ‘TECH’ for a complimentary trial.

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