Home Finance G7 Finance Leaders Condemn Hamas ‘Terror Attacks’ on Israel

G7 Finance Leaders Condemn Hamas ‘Terror Attacks’ on Israel

By Leika Kihara and David Lawder

MARRAKECH, Morocco (Reuters) -Finance leaders of the Group of Seven (G7) advanced nations on Thursday condemned “terror attacks” on Israel by Hamas and voiced their “unwavering” support for Ukraine in its continuing struggle against a Russian invasion.

The escalating geo-political tension overshadowed the G7 gathering chaired by Japan, whose initial agenda focused on seeking solutions for heavily indebted low-income countries and speeding up reforms of multilateral development banks.

“We unequivocally condemn the recent terror attacks by Hamas on the state of Israel and express our solidarity with the Israeli people,” the G7 finance ministers and central bank governors said in a joint statement after the meeting.

The group, made up of the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan, also voiced its resolve to enforce sanctions and other economic measures against Russia.

“We remain committed to countering any attempts to evade and undermine our sanctions measures,” the G7 officials said, adding that they would monitor the effectiveness of price caps on Russian petroleum products and take “any necessary and appropriate enforcement actions required.”

In a nod to a push made by Europe, the G7 members said they would consider ways to spend proceeds from frozen Russian assets for Ukraine’s reconstruction.

“We will explore how any extraordinary revenues held by private entities stemming directly from immobilized Russian sovereign assets … could be directed to support Ukraine and its recovery and reconstruction in compliance with applicable laws,” the statement said.

The gathering in Marrakech, held on the sidelines of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank annual meeting taking place in Morocco, was the first in-person talks among G7 finance leaders since the Middle East crisis began less than a week ago.

Japanese Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki said many G7 participants voiced concern and condemnation over the escalating conflict in the Middle East.

“This was not on the G7 agenda, so many participants spent time voicing their views,” he said in the chair news conference after the meeting. Once a proposal on how to phrase the issue in the statement was made, “there weren’t calls for any language to be added or removed,” he said.

The G7 statement made no mention on the potential impact of the crisis on the global economy. But Bank of Japan Governor Kazuo Ueda said the conflict, while not immediately leading to a change in his view on the global outlook, was another a layer of uncertainty.

“Developments in Ukraine has heightened uncertainty over the global economic outlook, thereby making it difficult to navigate monetary policy,” Ueda told the briefing. “The latest developments in the Middle East add to this uncertainty.”

(Reporting by Leika Kihara and David Lawder; editing by Mark Heinrich and Bill Berkrot)

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