Leaders of the world's seven largest economies meeting in the Sicilian tourist town of Taormina. But U.S. President Donald Trump may be about to shake it up. I'm Reuters Matthew Larotonda in Sicily where G7 negotiators are carefully drafting the missive that will determine how these countries move forward after the summit.
But our diplomatic sources are telling us that those negotiations are going down to the wire due to that American wild card. For one, Europe's immigration crisis. Migrant boats making the treacherous journey from Africa are often found in these waters. Central reason the location was chosen. The Italian delegation wants to explore ways to help African nations keep poverty and war from driving migrants north.
But Trump's past criticism of Europe's handling of the crisis has rattled some members. His proposed federal budget would also gut funding to American agencies. That handle foreign aid by over a quarter, if approved by Congress. Begging the question of where they'll find common ground. Another potential clash is climate change.
The President doubts that global warming is man-made and is expected to decide whether to pull the US out of the Paris Climate Accords after the G7 concludes. A withdrawal he championed on the campaign trial. France's new President Emmanuel Macron, the only head of state who hasn't met Trump yet.
Is expected to pressure the American to stay in. Free trade is also a conflict. Trump pulled the United States out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Which includes fellow G7 members Canada and Japan, in his first week in office. And his administration has suggested curbing a trade imbalance with Germany as well.
National security, including the war in Syria and containing North Korea, other hot button issues. With all of this still undecided before the event, agreeing to a common position may be out of negotiator's hands. Leaving it to the world leaders themselves to strike an accord face to face.