Merkel, Citing Global Virus, May Skip Trump’s Rescheduled G-7

German Chancellor Angela Merkel indicated she may not travel to the U.S. in June to attend a physical meeting of the Group of Seven leaders, an event that President Donald Trump heralded as a great sign of “normalization.”

“Given the current state of events, in view of the overall pandemic situation, she’s unable to confirm her personal participation,” a government spokesperson said in an emailed statement on Saturday. “She will continue to monitor further developments of the pandemic.”

Merkel, who has described the Covid-19 crisis as the country’s greatest challenge since World War II, has her hands full, both helping steer a massive recovery program for the European Union that’s unprecedented in scope, while also preparing Germany’s economic stimulus package.

Trump had originally hoped to hold the conference at his Doral resort in Florida before moving it to Camp David amid bipartisan criticism. In March, the U.S. said it would instead be held by video conference because of the coronavirus pandemic. Earlier this month, President Trump began pushing for leaders to travel to the U.S. to hold the meeting in person.

“Now that our Country is ‘Transitioning back to Greatness,’ I am considering rescheduling the G-7, on the same or similar date, in Washington, D.C., at the legendary Camp David. The other members are also beginning their COMEBACK. It would be a great sign to all – normalization!” Trump said May 20 in a tweet.

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