News / Europe

Europe Prepares for Dressing Down at G8

German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a debate after delivering a statement on her government policies ahead of the upcoming G8 and NATO summits Bundestag, in Berlin, May 10, 2012.German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a debate after delivering a statement on her government policies ahead of the upcoming G8 and NATO summits Bundestag, in Berlin, May 10, 2012.
x
German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a debate after delivering a statement on her government policies ahead of the upcoming G8 and NATO summits Bundestag, in Berlin, May 10, 2012.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a debate after delivering a statement on her government policies ahead of the upcoming G8 and NATO summits Bundestag, in Berlin, May 10, 2012.
Henry Ridgwell
LONDON - With eyes firmly focused on the eurozone's debt crisis and its threat to global recovery, leaders of the Group of Eight (G8) major industrialized nations are preparing to meet Friday at Camp David, near Washington.  European Union leaders are unlikely to get much sympathy for their present economic predicament.

It is Europe’s G8 members, notably France and Germany, who will face the scrutiny of fellow leaders at Camp David.

With full military honors, Francois Hollande arrived in Berlin under stormy skies Tuesday, just hours after being sworn in as French president and the continent seemingly sinking further into economic crisis.

Earlier, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the G8 meeting was timely.

//www.youtube.com/embed/079VYWizypg" width="420">Together with industrialized nations, she says the G8 must work harder than ever to get rid of the high debt levels, adding the G8 is exactly the right framework. Merkel says this will be the foundation for stable and sustainable growth.

Shrinking economies across southern Europe have prompted calls for a change of focus from austerity to growth.

To add to its economic meltdown, Greece is facing a political crisis.  Elections failed to produce a majority and the country is going back to the polls next month.

G8 leaders outside Europe will have a simple message for the eurozone, says Stephanie Rickard of the London School of Economics. “I think they are going to say, ‘Hey, eurozone leaders, you need to solve this problem.’  I think they are going to say this is not a U.S. issue, this is not a Canadian issue, this is really a European issue and Europe needs to clean house,” she said.

EU leaders have looked to China’s booming economy for help in pulling the eurozone out of its debt mire.  But Beijing will not come to the rescue, says Professor Steve Tsang of the China Policy Institute at Nottingham University.

“From their perspective, there is no reason why the hard-working Chinese should put their very hard-earned cash to bail out the very wealthy and in some ways lazy Europeans,” Tsang stated.

President Vladimir Putin of Russia is not attending.  Moscow says he has domestic affairs to deal with. 

“This is potentially a fracture in the organization that is critical not just for this meeting," Rickard noted. "But for the future of the G8 and for the future of global cooperation.”

The one new face at the G8, Francois Hollande, faces a baptism of fire on the world stage.

Enroute to Berlin, the French presidential plane was hit by lightning, forcing it to return to the air base outside Paris, where the president boarded a second aircraft bound for Germany.  Hollande will hope for better omens on his second major foreign trip in just his first week of presidency.

You May Like

IS Militants Release 49 Turkish Hostages

Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency reports that no ransom was paid and no conditions accepted for the hostages' release; few details of the release are known More

Photogallery IS Attacks Send Thousands of Syrian Kurds Fleeing to Turkey

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says more than 300 Kurdish fighters crossed into Syria from Turkey to defend a Kurdish area from attack by the Islamic militants More

Video Sierra Leone's Ebola Lockdown Continues

Thousands of health workers are going door to door in the West African country of 6 million, informing people of how to avoid Ebola, handing out soap More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Fears Ebola Outbreak ‘Beyond Our Capability to Contain’i
X
Jeff Seldin
September 20, 2014 10:28 PM
Each day brings with it new warnings about the deadly Ebola outbreak already blamed for killing more than 2,600 people across West Africa. And while countries and international organizations like the United Nations are starting to come through on promises of help for those most affected, the unprecedented speed with which the virus has spread is raising questions about the international response. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from Washington.
Video

Video Fears Ebola Outbreak ‘Beyond Our Capability to Contain’

Each day brings with it new warnings about the deadly Ebola outbreak already blamed for killing more than 2,600 people across West Africa. And while countries and international organizations like the United Nations are starting to come through on promises of help for those most affected, the unprecedented speed with which the virus has spread is raising questions about the international response. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from Washington.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Obama Goes to UN With Islamic State, Ebola on Agenda

President Obama goes to the United Nations General Assembly to rally nations to support a coalition against Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria. He also will look for nations to back his plan to fight the Ebola virus in West Africa. As VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports, Obama’s efforts reflect new moves by the U.S. administration to take a leading role in addressing world crises.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid