Bruising for a fight, President Trump barreled into the Group of Seven summit Friday, seemingly ready to confront longtime US allies over a burgeoning trade dispute. Trump joined the leaders of major industrialized nations in the Canadian resort town of La Malbaie in Quebec after days of escalating conflict over new US tariffs he slapped on imports of steel and aluminum. However, while Trump sounded adversarial in pre-departure comments—suggesting that Russia be allowed back into the group—he did seek to lower the temperature after his arrival, per the AP. He bantered easily with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, joking that the neighboring leader had "agreed to cut all tariffs and all trade barriers."
Trump also emphasized a "good relationship" with French President Emmanuel Macron, saying they sometimes have a "little test" on trade, but predicting a positive outcome. Still, the fundamental differences remained clear. Trump again railed against trade deficits with other countries and repeated that he may pursue separate negotiations with Canada and Mexico to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement. Trump showed up late and will leave early on Saturday, heading to Singapore for his meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Asked if Trudeau was upset he'd be leaving Canada early, Trump joked, "He's happy."
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