‘G7 plus one’? Isolated Russia holds line on Syria.


Russia‘s fundamental differences with the West over how to seek peace in war-torn Syria has left Moscow isolated and this year’s summit of the Group of Eight industrial democracies in some disarray – creating a situation that Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper bluntly described as “G7 plus one.”

And though a sour-faced President Vladimir Putin soldiered his way through the two-day meeting at a golf resort in Northern Ireland – he avoided the G8 altogether last year – some Russian experts say that Moscow may not care much if its stubbornness over the shape of a Syrian peace settlement isolates it, or even compromises the G8 membership that former Russian President Boris Yeltsin worked so hard to attain in 1997.

“We’re a new member of this club and we have our own views, which we will express,” says Andrei Klimov, deputy chair of the State Duma’s international affairs committee.

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