G8: Japan-US Summit Meeting, Demonstration in Sapporo

What do you think - should the United States wait until China and India also decide to do something about climate change?

On measures against global warming, which are a focal point of the G8 summit, US president George W Bush met with Japan's prime minister Yasuo Fukuda today on Sunday. The two leaders agreed to cooperate in making progress, including setting up long-term targets, according to NHK World. Mr Fukuda said the two countries' opinions are getting closer, and he does not think the United States is losing sight of its direction.

Mr Bush responded that he wants to act in a constructive way, but said he is a "pragmatist" and noted that the issue will not be resolved unless China and India share what the United States is being urged to do. Mr Bush also said he will be attending the summit for the 8th time, and he feels that it is going to be a success this time, hinting that the United States will cooperate with the chair country, Japan. Mr Fukuda said the two countries agreed that soaring crude oil and food prices are severely affecting the world economy, and swift measures are needed to address them.

Meanwhile, activists from NGOs have staged a large demonstration in Sapporo, the biggest city in Hokkaido, Japan.

Some 5,000 anti-summit domestic and overseas NGO members and citizens marched in the center of Sapporo on the afternoon of July 5 to appeal for environmental conservation and an end to global inequality. The peaceful demonstration was the largest of its kind scheduled for this year's G8 Summit. It was organized by Sapporo-based civil group Hokkaido Peace Net and other NGOs. Participants spent around two hours walking and chanting slogans such as "G8 can't decide global issues on their own." They also protested that the G8 leaders are leaving issues such as poverty and global warming unaddressed.

Four people were arrested on charges of obstructing official duties and violating Sapporo's public safety ordinance by allegedly hitting police with a truck and engaging in illegal agitation activities. One of those arrested was a photographer from the British news agency Reuters. The Hokkaido Police say he was apprehended on charges of obstructing official duties by kicking an officer. He says the police officer threw the first punch.

Also, 19 Korean citizens from a farmers' movement group who had been refused entry to Japan at New Chitose Airport were deported on a flight to Seoul on July 5.

Hokkaido Shimbun has the best news coverage of the summit that we have found so far!

Read more:
People's Summit 2008 - We Can Change the World
Japan for Sustainability Summit Information
G8 MediaNetwork TV & Videos

(Top photo from Reuters, small photo from Hokkaido Shimbun)

Brought to you by Martin Frid at greenz.jp

Tags: Japan


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