Manipulative G7 slammed for exclusiveness, against trend
Group descends into an echo chamber of US' talking points: expert
Published: May 22, 2023 12:44 AM Updated: May 22, 2023 12:48 AM
Protesters confront police during a march against the Group of Seven (G7) Summit held in Hiroshima, Japan on May 21, 2023. The protesters accused the G7 nations of escalating the Ukraine crisis, chanted anti-war slogans and hoisted banners calling for

Protesters confront police during a march against the Group of Seven (G7) Summit held in Hiroshima, Japan on May 21, 2023. The protesters accused the G7 nations of escalating the Ukraine crisis, chanted anti-war slogans and hoisted banners calling for "No war." Photo: VCG

China has strongly pushed back against a harshly toned G7 communiqué, saying what the group does is to hinder international peace, undermine regional stability and curb other countries' development. Experts slammed the communiqué saying that the G7 has descended to an echo chamber of US talking points. Such a statement fails to reflect all members' dignity and autonomy, they said. 

After marshaling other G7 leaders to step up condemnation of China, US President Joe Biden reportedly invited leaders of Japan and South Korea to meet in Washington. Chinese observers noted that the slew of moves lay bare US' intentions to replicate "Ukraine crisis" in the Asia-Pacific region, deepen the division among regional countries, and may even launch a proxy war in this area.

A spokesperson from the Chinese Foreign Ministry castigated the communiqué and other documents adopted at the G7, which criticizes China on various fronts, including the alleged military and economic threats posed by China and affairs related to Hong Kong, Xinjiang and Xizang regions. It also pressed China to urge Russia stop its conflict with Ukraine.

"Despite China's serious concerns, the G7 used issues concerning China to smear and attack China and brazenly interfere in China's internal affairs. China strongly deplores and firmly opposes this and has made serious démarches to the summit's host Japan and other parties concerned," the Foreign Ministry spokesperson said. 

Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Sun Weidong summoned Japanese Ambassador to China Tarumi Hideo on Sunday, and lodged solemn representations over the hyping up of China-related issues at the G7 summit being held in Hiroshima, Japan.

Entrenched by camp confrontation and Cold War mentality, the actions of the G7 group went against the historic trend, objective facts and international morality, Sun pointed out. 

Japan, as the holder of the rotating presidency of the G7 this year, collaborated with relevant countries to smear and attack China during a series of activities and in the joint communiqué of the G7 Summit, grossly interfering in China's internal affairs, violating the basic principles of international law and the spirit of the four political documents between China and Japan, and harming China's sovereignty, security and development interests, Sun noted.

The Chinese Embassy in Japan on Saturday also expressed strong opposition to the G7's irresponsible comments on China, and urged the group to reflect on itself and stop creating confrontations and divisions.

The Chinese Embassy in the UK and the Chinese Ambassador to Canada, Cong Peiwu, also fired back at the G7's manipulation of China-related issues, urging them to abandon their Cold War mentality. They warned that any actions or statements that harm China's interests will be met with a resolute and forceful response.

Talking against China 

Chinese observers view the G7 communiqué as a US-dominated document, in which other members just tagged along and did not show their expected autonomy and dignity. The document, which has placed China at the center of all key topics of interest, be it economic or security concerns, poses serious threats to global stability and peace.

In the communiqué, which was issued on the second day of the three-day summit, heads of the G7 nations said they will seek to "address the challenges" posed by China's non-market policies and practices, which distort the global economy. They said they will counter "malign practices, such as illegitimate technology transfer or data disclosure," as well as "foster resilience to economic coercion." 

Chen Jia, a veteran macro economy observer, said that it's "ironic" that the G7 members' attitude toward China is turning hawkish at a time when the summit carries the objective of global peace, stability and prosperity.

According to Chen, although the US appears to have emphasized on multiple occasions that they are not intending to decouple from China, judging from what the US government does in reality, it is doing otherwise. 

"Decoupling and de-risking are gradually becoming two pillar concepts in the G7's relations with China, with the US being the core, although it seems Washington doesn't want to acknowledge that, in order to avoid intensifying contradictions with Beijing," Chen told the Global Times on Sunday.

Under such an environment, the G7 is increasingly bending to US pressure, becoming a group with "strategic alignment" against China, experts noted. 

Qiu Wenxu, director of Industry Development Department at the Alliance of Belt and Road Business Schools said that since the G7's Build Back Better World (B3W), an initiative launched in 2021 which is deemed as an alternative to China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) did not materialize, many developing countries are clear that G7 members are declining in economy and influence.

"As the world has gradually lost expectations over G7 countries, answering the US' requests and talking against China have become their new 'consensus.' But I think although many G7 nations make such gestures, they still cling to rational decisions out of their own interests [when it comes to China-related policies] in action," Qiu told the Global Times. 

According to Qiu, if the G7 nations ignore economic rules and decide to go down the route of protectionism, it would exert a negative influence on the existing global industrial structure, as well as hurt their own industries' competitiveness. 

Replicate Ukraine crisis 

When meeting on Sunday with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Hiroshima, Japan, where the G7 summit took place, Biden announced a new package of military aid to Ukraine and told Zelensky that the US was doing all it could to strengthen Ukraine's defense for the conflict with Russia, media reported. 

Lü Xiang, a research fellow at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times that the US is happy to see tension between Russia and Ukraine continue, as the ongoing crisis helps Washington to tighten its grip on Europe, thus even though Zelensky was present at the G7, Biden is the one behind the wheel. 

The US' push to heavily foreground China and Russia at the G7 summit is a way to create another Ukraine crisis in the Asia-Pacific region, Li Haidong, a professor with the China Foreign Affairs University, told the Global Times. "No doubt, the US strategy is to deepen divisions among Asian countries, and even launch a proxy war in Asia, similar to what it did in the Middle East and Europe. It is pulling Japan and South Korea to its side to act as its vassals, which is alarming," Li said. 

Biden on Sunday invited the leaders of Japan and South Korea to formal three-way talks in Washington, a senior US administration official was quoted by AFP as saying.

Li said that Japan's role in the G7 is worth noting, as the country, more envious about China's growing influence in region, is acting as a US vassal in region to confront China and is egging on other extraterritorial countries to interfere in regional affairs, to amplify its power to counterweigh China. 

In a move some analysts said was aimed at Beijing, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida invited eight non-member countries to the summit in a bid to expand the US-led coalition's influence among China's Asian neighbors and developing countries.

Li said that Japan has been shrouded by an unhealthy mentality of buttering up to the US. Take the G7 summit as an example, Japan seems always to worry that its loyalty toward the US is not shown enough, and that it has not devoted enough to the US' Asia-Pacific strategy. 

Experts warned that since Japan has already caused substantial damage to regional countries during World War II, its expansion of militarism and acting as US vassal will deeply alert regional countries, and Tokyo will make itself a "country non grata" in this area once again.