Clash between liberal and authoritarian values at G20 summit

Sex workers in Osaka have decided to do their bit for the G20 summit volunteering to close all the area's brothel doors

Sex workers in Osaka have decided to do their bit for the G20 summit volunteering to close all the area's brothel doors

President Donald Trump began his most consequential overseas trip of the year on Thursday with a warm dinner with the prime minister of Australia, a friendly opening act before the impending gauntlet of negotiations on worldwide crises, trade wars and a growing global to-do list.

At a meeting held at noon on Friday, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called for the maintenance of the free trade system and indicated his willingness for discussions aimed at compiling a leaders' declaration on Saturday.

The G-20 dropped its signature pledge to fight protectionism in the previous meeting past year in Argentina as US President Donald Trump has pushed his "America First" agenda and shied away from multilateral arrangements.

It was the surest sign that Trump's tweet asking India to withdraw tariffs against United States goods, ("this is unacceptable and the tariffs must be withdrawn!") did not go down well with the Indian government. Trump, when questioned, said "there's no rush".

Some hours prior to Jokowi's departure for the G20 Summit on Thursday evening, he had his victory in the April 17 presidential election approved and declared legal by the Constitutional Court.

Putin, whose country faces an array of USA and European Union sanctions, said at the meeting that "international trade has suffered from protectionism, politically motivated restrictions and barriers".

The first day of the summit will end with a cultural event and G20 Leaders Dinner.

"He (Trump) talked about what the USA was doing to ensure that stability is maintained in the Gulf that oil prices were stable", he said. His aides have grown anxious that Trump could use the meeting to once again attack Robert Mueller's probe on the world stage, particularly since the special counsel now has a date to testify before Congress next month.

"Around the time of the cherry blossoms next spring, I would like to welcome President Xi as a state guest to Japan, and hope to further elevate ties between Japan and China to the next level", Abe told Xi earlier.

Abe's remarks suggested that concerns over the slowdown of the global economy are growing in the face of U.S. But in a group photo of the leaders and their spouses, first lady Melania Trump is noticeably missing.

Putin praised President Donald Trump for his efforts to try to stop the flow of migrants and drugs from Mexico and said that liberalism "presupposes that nothing needs to be done".

Florida dad 'Supermans' over 4-foot pool fence to save drowning son
And among the children ages 1 to 4 who die of unintentional injuries, drowning accounts for one-third of the deaths. A heroic dad was caught on camera doing a Superman-style jump over a fence and into a pool to save his son.

Japan's huge trade surplus over the U.S., likewise, has been a perennial bugbear for Mr Trump, who has refused to budge significantly on the issue except giving Mr Abe a reprieve in delaying an outcome until after an Upper House election scheduled for July 21. The finding lifted a cloud over the White House even as tensions have increased between Washington and Moscow.

Russians Have Low Expectations of Latest Putin-Trump Encounter video player.

In addition to member nations, this year's G-20 summit has invited the leaders of such nations as Vietnam and Thailand.

The long-running US-China trade war looked set to dominate the two-day meeting of world leaders in Osaka from Friday but clashes also loomed over climate and hotspots including North Korea and Iran.

Trump will also meet with the Saudi crown prince, who US intelligence services concluded ordered the grisly killing of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, a USA resident.

But the backdrop, as always, will be Russia's 2016 election interference. He then repeated "don't meddle in the election", while pointing a finger at Putin. That included a Russian military intelligence operation to break into Democratic Party emails and efforts by a "troll farm" to spread divisive rhetoric and undermine the USA political system by using phony social media accounts.

Trump told reporters he expected "productive" talks.

Trump kicks off meetings with global leaders - 8:22 p.m.

Trump landed in Osaka on Thursday amid a tropical cyclone that is predicted to turn into a typhoon - a possible metaphor for the four days of high-stakes diplomacy that lie ahead.

Looming over the talks was also the continuing tensions in the Middle East, but here too Trump seemed to step back from more bellicose recent rhetoric saying there was "no rush" to solve the crisis that has sparked fears of a military conflict in the Gulf.

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