The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Trump postpones G-7 until September after Merkel declines invitation, citing pandemic

Speaking in the Rose Garden on May 29, President Trump said that the United States would no longer have a relationship with the World Health Organization. (Video: Reuters)
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President Trump says he will postpone until September the annual Group of Seven meeting of world leaders. The president had wanted to hold the gathering in-person by the end of June at the White House. But earlier Saturday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel declined his invitation, citing concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.

“As of today, considering the overall pandemic situation, she cannot agree to her personal participation, to a journey to Washington,” a spokesman for Merkel said in a statement to The Washington Post. Trump said he plans to invite Russia, South Korea, Australia and India to the September meeting.

Here are some significant developments:

  • Government officials and health experts around the world criticized Trump’s decision to terminate the United States’ relationship with the World Health Organization. European Union leaders urged him to reconsider the move, saying international cooperation was essential to succeed in controlling the coronavirus pandemic.
  • New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo (D) signed into law on Saturday a bill increasing benefits to the families of medical staff, police officers, transit workers, and other public employees who have died while on the job from covid-19.
  • Coronavirus deaths in the United States probably surpassed 100,000 three weeks before the official death toll reached that milestone, according to an analysis by The Washington Post and researchers from the Yale School of Public Health.
  • The Supreme Court late Friday rejected a California church’s challenge of the state’s new pandemic-related rules on worship services, with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. joining the court’s liberals in the 5-to-4 vote.
  • Health officials are investigating the potential spread of the coronavirus in central Missouri after a person who attended crowded pool parties at the Lake of the Ozarks over Memorial Day weekend tested positive for the virus.
  • A Michigan barber who became a symbol of the anti-shutdown movement when he defied the governor’s coronavirus restrictions must close his shop until health officials say it’s safe to reopen, a judge ordered.

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