G8 Summit Yanked From Russia

West ratcheting up pressure on Putin
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 24, 2014 12:21 PM CDT
G8 Summit Yanked From Russia
British Prime Minister David Cameron attends the opening session of the Nuclear Summit in The Hague, Netherlands, March 24, 2014.   (AP Photo/Sean Gallup, Pool)

The other seven members of the G8 are calling off the meeting Russia was supposed to host in Sochi in June, David Cameron revealed today. Cameron, President Obama, and the other leaders of the G7 nations—which is to say the G8 minus Russia—are holding an emergency meeting at the Hague today, on the sidelines of a nuclear summit. "There's not going to be a G8 summit in Russia," Cameron said, according to the BBC. "That's absolutely clear. … Frankly, it is Russia that needs to change course."

If Russia doesn't change, the nations have hinted that more sanctions could be on the way—and that could be bad news for Russia. Some banks are predicting that the sanctions already have Russia headed toward recession. The Russian bank SMP has seen $258 million withdrawn since the US sanctioned it, according to Voice of America. Ordinary Russians feel it is they, not Vladimir Putin or his inner circle, who will be hurt most, USA Today reports. But the US might have a secret weapon; Bloomberg has a fascinating piece on a Russian billionaire currently being detained on a US warrant who might fork over crucial information on Gazprom that could really hurt Putin's inner circle. (Read more David Cameron stories.)

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