G7 photograph memifies Trump diplomacy

A photo of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other world leaders standing over a cross-armed United States President Donald Trump at Friday’s G7 summit has been given the meme treatment on social media.

The photo, snapped by German government photographer Jesco Denzel, went viral after Merkel’s spokesperson Steffen Seibert tweeted the picture with the caption: “Second day of the #G7 Summit in Canada: deliberations on the fringes of the official agenda #G7Charlevoix”

Though other leaders had their own images of the meeting tweeted out, Denzel’s photograph — which shows Merkel standing dominantly over a petulant-looking Trump — became the most enduring after it caught the imagination of the web.

The calamitous summit ended in disarray after Trump broadsided his allies by disavowing a joint statement the US had agreed to.

The joint statement says the leaders of the US, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Japan, Italy, and Canada “acknowledge free, fair, and mutually beneficial trade is a key engine for growth and jobs”, and commits the G7 to modernise the World Trade Organisation. It also says the countries will work to promote low or no tariffs in order to promote trade between them.

READ MORE: Trump sours agreement at G7 on climate change, refugee crisis

Canada’s Justin Trudeau and other leaders had given closing press conferences and announced a US-backed joint statement. Shortly after that statement was published online, Trump complained about comments made by Trudeau and revoked his support.

“I have instructed our US Reps not to endorse the Communique as we look at Tariffs on automobiles flooding the US Market!” Trump tweeted Saturday evening, saying he was responding to the Canadian leader, who he called dishonest and weak.

Sarah Smit
Sarah Smit
Sarah Smit is a general news reporter at the Mail & Guardian. She covers topics relating to labour, corruption and the law.
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