Chief diplomats from the world’s leading democracies rallied together in a joint statement condemning global adversaries like Iran and North Korea and called on Russia and China to remember their security commitments to the United Nations.
After two days of meetings, officials from the Group of 7 (G7) released a lengthy statement Friday in an address to its top geopolitical challengers, warning them to adhere to international laws.
“We again call on Russia to immediately stop its war of aggression against Ukraine and withdraw all of its forces and military equipment,” the group said before it accused Moscow of “terrorizing” Ukrainian civilians and engaging “irresponsible nuclear rhetoric.”
The G7 said Friday it had created a “coordination mechanism” to help Kyiv repair, restore and defend its critical infrastructure system decimated in part by Iranian-supplied drones Tehran gifted to Moscow.
The alliance pledged to keep hitting Iran with international sanctions over its military aid to Russia and called on Tehran to cease involvement in not only the deadly war but gross human rights abuses at home.
“We strongly condemn Iran’s continued destabilizing activities in and around the Middle East,” the statement continued. “These include Iran’s activities with both ballistic and cruise missiles, as well as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), i.e. drones, and transfers of such advanced weaponry to state and non-state actors.”
Iran was not the only nation called out for its illicit arms activity.
G7 leaders also condemned North Korea’s historic missile use this week and failed attempt to test another intercontinental ballistic missile launch as the U.S. and South Korea engage in joint military drills.
The U.S. extended the military exercises Thursday after Pyongyang threatened to make Washington and Seoul “pay the most horrible price in history” and fired at least 23 missiles toward South Korea after launching an intermediate-range ballistic missile over Japan for the first time in five years earlier this month, a move the G7 on Friday condemned as “reckless.”
“We reiterate our demand that the DPRK [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea] abandon its nuclear weapons, existing nuclear programs and any other weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs,” the group said.
Regional alliances over Russia’s war in Ukraine have seen renewed division on Asia’s eastern front between Japan, North and South Korea and China.
G7 diplomats again cautioned China against interfering in the regional status quo and called on it to “abstain from threats, coercion, intimidation or the use of force.”
The statement said the top leaders remained “seriously concerned about the situation in and around the East and South China Seas” following Beijing’s aggressive force posture toward Taiwan earlier this year.
The G7’s strong language with respect to China reflected sentiments echoed by the U.S. last month when it listed Beijing as its chief security concern, while saying it will continue to diplomatically engage with the Asian superpower.