President Biden and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday agreed to a revitalized Atlantic Charter in their first face-to-face meeting, a day ahead of the Group of Seven summit. The document, which updates an agreement signed in 1941, seeks to build on common principles to address new challenges, including climate change and cyberattacks.

Biden, visiting England on his first overseas trip as president, later described the U.S. decision to donate 500 million doses of coronavirus vaccine to other nations as “a monumental commitment by the American people.” He said other G-7 nations would also be announcing vaccine commitments.

Here’s what to know:

9:57 p.m.
Link copied

Biden gives Johnson custom bicycle, helmet from Philadelphia business

To mark their shared interest in cycling, Biden gifted Johnson a custom-made touring bicycle and helmet Thursday from Bilenky Cycle Works, a small family business in Philadelphia, the White House said.

When he was mayor of London, Johnson often rode his bike to work and helped launch a bicycle rental program in the city that some called “Boris Bikes.” Johnson was hospitalized last year in serious condition with covid-19 but recovered and resumed cycling long distances.

Biden also has long loved bicycling and often goes on leisurely bike rides near his home in Delaware, including last week to celebrate his wife’s 70th birthday. He has also worked out on a Peloton bike, though aides are keeping tight-lipped about whether he still uses one in the White House.

In 2010, Bilenky Cycle Works founded the Philadelphia Bike Expo, which has become one of the largest cycling trade shows in the United States.

9:13 p.m.
Link copied

Analysis: NATO prepares for a friendlier president — and shifted under a skeptical one

NATO has faced at least two significant, unexpected strains over the past decade.

The first came when Russia annexed Crimea by force in 2014. The move reinforced the utility of an alliance that could serve as a counterweight to aggression from that country, even if Russia’s gambit ultimately left it in control of that region.

The second came when Donald Trump was elected president.

Trump had two instincts that ran against the history of U.S. involvement in organizations such as NATO. He felt that the U.S. military was being taken advantage of by other countries, like European nations or South Korea, and that the financial obligations that resulted should be offset by drawdowns or increased funding from our allies.

7:16 p.m.
Link copied

Hotel housing journalists, security staff for G-7 summit closed following covid outbreak

A hotel where many journalists and security staff were staying during the Group of Seven summit shut down due to a coronavirus outbreak.

The Pedn Olva hotel in St. Ives shut following an outbreak among staff, a spokesperson told the Post. The establishment initially closed only the restaurant and public areas but eventually shut the guest rooms, as well.

“We can confirm that a number of our team at the Pedn Olva, St. Ives, have tested positive for covid-19,” a brewery spokesman said. “We immediately notified Public Health England (PHE) of these cases and have been working closely with them to ensure we follow all appropriate safety guidelines.”

Calls to the hotel resulted in a message that all operators were busy, and it was not possible to leave a message.

Thousand of individuals are expected to travel to the area as global leaders gather for the first in-person world summit since the beginning of the pandemic. Much attention has been on Britain recently given the spread of an infectious variant of the coronavirus and the fact that some restrictions remain in place.

“We fully appreciate the inconvenience given the limited accommodation options available in the area at the moment, but the safety and security of our team and guests is our utmost priority,” the spokesman said. “The hotel will reopen once a full covid-19 deep clean has taken place and we have the available staff to run it.”

6:17 p.m.
Link copied

Biden, Johnson express support for probe into coronavirus origins

Biden and Johnson released a statement Thursday expressing support for an investigation into the origins of the coronavirus, including a focus on China’s role and the effect that future outbreaks could have on global health security.

The two countries will “support a timely, transparent and evidence-based independent process for the next phase of the WHO-convened COVID-19 origins study, including in China, and for investigating outbreaks of unknown origin in the future,” the statement said.

Last month, amid growing questions about the virus’s origins and an inconclusive report about whether the virus came from contact with an animal or a lab incident, Biden ordered U.S. intelligence agencies to redouble their efforts to investigate with specific questions for China. He gave the intelligence community 90 days to report back.

The statement on the origins of the latest coronavirus stresses a commitment between the two countries to partner with other nations in implementing resolutions adopted at the World Health Assembly in May.

“We will take account of the recommendations of the International Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response as we work together to learn the lessons from the pandemic and strengthen future preparedness,” the statement said.

Other global health issues that the two plan to prioritize include HIV/AIDS; maternal, neonatal and child health; and strengthening the world’s health systems to make withstanding future shocks more possible.

6:11 p.m.
Link copied

U.S., U.K. will work to ‘rally all countries’ to combat climate change, Biden and Johnson say

In their joint declaration Thursday, Biden and Johnson emphasized the need for global cooperation on climate change, pledging to “champion the best available science” as they work together on the issue.

The two leaders said they will work to “rally all countries to strengthen their climate ambitions; achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement; keep within reach the goal of limiting global average temperature rise to no more than 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels; and bend the curve of biodiversity loss by 2030.”

“We underscore our commitment to achieving net zero emissions by 2050 at the latest, and call on all other countries to do likewise,” they said. They also pledged to “support a resilient transition to decarbonised economies with quality job opportunities; and make progress on climate action in a gender responsive manner.”

The United States officially rejoined the Paris climate accord in February, after a four-year-stretch in which President Donald Trump repeatedly disparaged the international agreement and withdrew the country from it.

Biden also in April pledged to slash U.S. greenhouse gas emissions at least in half by the end of the decade, as part of an aggressive push to combat climate change at home and persuade other major economies to follow suit.

Dino Grandoni and Brady Dennis contributed to this report.

6:01 p.m.
Link copied

Biden says U.S. donated vaccines will start shipping in August

President Biden on June 10 announced that the United States would purchase 500 million doses of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine to donate to the world. (The Washington Post)

Biden on Thursday detailed the U.S. commitment to donate 500 million coronavirus vaccine doses to other countries, saying that the first shipments will take place in August “as quickly as they roll off the manufacturing line.”

Biden cast the decision to share the vaccines as “a monumental commitment by the American people.”

“We’re a nation full of people who step up at times of need to help our fellow human beings, both at home and abroad,” he said.

Biden stressed the United States would expect nothing in return from the lower-income nations benefiting from the nation’s largesse.

“Our vaccine donations don’t include pressure for favors or potential concessions,” Biden said, adding that he expects other G-7 nations to donate vaccines as well.

Biden said 200 million of the vaccine doses would be delivered this year, with the remainder shipped in the first half of next year.

He was joined for his remarks by Pfizer chief executive officer Albert Bourla.

5:57 p.m.
Link copied

Biden, Johnson say U.S., U.K. will establish working group on ‘the return of safe and sustainable international travel’

Biden and Johnson on Thursday announced that the United States and Britain will establish a joint working group to provide recommendations on normalizing international travel in the latest phase of the covid-19 pandemic.

“We look forward to normalising two-way travel between our two countries,” the two leaders said in a joint statement that was released by the White House. “We will establish a joint U.K.-U.S. Experts’ Working Group, which will share expertise and provide recommendations to leaders on the return of safe and sustainable international travel, demonstrating the commitment of both countries to tackle COVID-19 together.”

The White House did not immediately release any further details.

Earlier this week, a White House official said the Biden administration will form “expert” working groups to help determine when to lift rules that ban travelers from coming to the United States from certain countries.

The groups will be led by the White House Covid-19 Response Team and the National Security Council. They will include representatives from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the State, Homeland Security, Health and Human Services, and Transportation departments.

The formation of the groups is a signal that despite pressure from the travel industry, the administration is taking a measured approach to lifting international restrictions, some of which have been in place since March 2020.

5:49 p.m.
Link copied

Johnson calls Biden’s approach ‘a breath of fresh air’

After meeting with Biden, Johnson has told British broadcasters that the new U.S. president’s approach is a “breath of fresh air."

The British prime minister, speaking in front of a windy, mizzle-flecked Cornish beach, said the U.S-.U.K. relationship was of “massive strategic importance for the prosperity, the security of the world, for all the things we believe in together democracy, human rights, the rule of law."

“The talks were great. They went on for a long time,” Johnson continued. The session lasted more than 90 minutes.

“We covered a huge range of subjects, and it’s wonderful to listen to the Biden administration, and to Joe Biden, because there’s so much that they want to do together with us — from security, NATO, to climate change and it’s fantastic," the prime minister said, before adding, "it’s a breath of fresh air.”

Johnson had previously dealt with Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump. Though the British leader appeared to try and maintain a close relationship with the Republican and the two were united in their support for Brexit, there were numerous policy disputes between the United States and Britain during that period.

However, Biden has pressured Johnson on some issues, including the ongoing disputes over the Irish border caused by Britain’s decision to leave the European Union.

Johnson said that the U.S. president did not push him on the issue during their meeting on Thursday, but said that maintaining peace in Northern Ireland and supporting the Good Friday Agreement was “absolutely common ground” between Washington and London.

4:38 p.m.
Link copied

Why was the venue for the Biden-Johnson meeting changed? That dreaded Cornish ‘mizzle’

Johnson had originally hoped to host his first face-to-face meeting with Biden at the picturesque St Michael’s Mount on Thursday, a tidal island off the Cornish coast that contains a historic castle with many echoes of Britain’s long and storied history.

But this being the “English Riviera,” Mother Nature didn’t comply. The U.S.-U.K. bilateral meeting has been moved to Carbis Bay on the mainland, a seaside resort where the later G-7 summit will also be held, with poor weather blamed for the shift.

British outlets are describing persistent “mizzle” as the reason for the venue change. For the uninitiated, the word describes a cross between “mist” and “drizzle” and refers to a type of damp and gray weather that is common in the Cornish summertime.

Local website Cornwall Live offered a first person account of the phenomena. “Anyone caught in mizzle will know that despite its cute name and initial feeling of light rain it will have you saturated within seconds,” chief reporter Lee Trewhela wrote Thursday.

4:33 p.m.
Link copied

G-7 in Cornwall aims to be first carbon-neutral summit. What will it take to offset all the jet fuel?

LONDON — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is promising to host the first-ever “carbon-neutral” summit for the Group of Seven this week — seeking to slash the emissions of climate-changing gases by sourcing the vegetables locally, deploying generators powered by hydro-treated vegetable oil and offsetting the international jet travel by building a composting facility in Vietnam.

Or at least that’s the idea.

Johnson’s green messaging might have been undercut a bit when he arrived in Cornwall via jet plane — vs. the slow train slog from London.

Pledging to go carbon-neutral is a bold move — and taps into the growing trend of producing “sustainable events” that try to limit carbon dioxide emissions and then compensate for the overages by supporting energy-efficiency projects in the developing world.

Going big on “net zero” also plays into Johnson’s pitch to make this week’s G-7 in Cornwall, England, a steppingstone toward November’s huge COP26 climate conference in Glasgow, which will seek to set tougher goals and firmer commitments to curb planetary warming.

4:08 p.m.
Link copied

Biden and Johnson unveil updated Atlantic Charter with focus on old principles and new threats

Upon the conclusion of their meeting, Biden and Johnson unveiled a “revitalized” Atlantic Charter, an update to an 80-year-old document that restates both nations’ commitment to the NATO military alliance but also addresses new challenges, including climate change, cyberattacks and election interference.

The original Atlantic Charter was a joint statement by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Prime Minister Winston Churchill in 1941 that set out their goals for cooperation following World War II.

“Our revitalised Atlantic Charter, building on the commitments and aspirations set out eighty years ago, affirms our ongoing commitment to sustaining our enduring values and defending them against new and old challenges,” Biden and Johnson say in the new document. “We commit to working closely with all partners who share our democratic values and to countering the efforts of those who seek to undermine our alliances and institutions.”

The new document details eight areas of agreement, expressed mostly in broad strokes with few specifics, starting with a “resolve to defend the principles, values, and institutions of democracy and open societies, which drive our own national strength and our alliances.”

The two leaders also pledge to “strengthen the institutions, laws, and norms that sustain international cooperation to adapt them to meet the new challenges of the 21st century.”

They affirm their belief in peaceful resolution of disputes and decry election interference. They pledge to harness scientific and technological innovations to create jobs. And they promise to maintain NATO as a nuclear alliance as long as there are nuclear weapons and to promote responsible state behavior in cyberspace.

They pledge to fight corruption and have high labor and environmental standards; tackle the climate crisis; and to work collectively to stave off and address health threats.

4:05 p.m.
Link copied

What are the key issues at stake at the G-7 summit?

This week, the leaders of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan will convene in England for the annual Group of 7 summit, a gathering of the world’s most powerful economies.

Here are some of the key issues that are likely to be at the forefront of their discussions.

Vaccine sharing and the coronavirus recovery

With G-7 nations on track on finish administering coronavirus vaccines to their adult populations in the coming months, pressure to share doses with developing nations is mounting. More than 100 former world leaders have urged the G-7 to cover two-thirds of the estimated $66 billion that it will cost to vaccinate low-income countries. A celebrity-backed appeal from UNICEF, meanwhile, asks the G-7 nations to donate 20 percent of their vaccine supplies by August.

3:56 p.m.
Link copied

Analysis: Biden, Putin raise the stakes for their first summit

Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday increased the stakes for their summit, with the United States raising expectations of blunt talk on a range of issues and Moscow moving to crush domestic opposition over Western objections.

In his first remarks on foreign soil since taking office, Biden told cheering U.S. Air Force personnel at Royal Air Force Mildenhall that his plan was to “meet with Mr. Putin to let him know what I want him to know.” The crowd laughed and clapped.

“I’m going to communicate that there are consequences for violating the sovereignty of democracies in the United States and Europe and elsewhere,” the president promised. “The United States will respond in a robust and meaningful way when the Russian government engages in harmful activities.”

3:47 p.m.
Link copied

First lady Jill Biden wears ‘LOVE’ jacket while meeting British Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Jill Biden was wearing a jacket with the word “LOVE” emblazoned on the back when she and her husband met with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his wife, Carrie, on Thursday afternoon.

The first lady’s jacket drew comparisons to one worn by her predecessor, Melania Trump, three years ago.

“I REALLY DON’T CARE, DO U?” read Melania Trump’s jacket, which the former first lady wore during a surprise trip to Texas to speak to children and officials at a shelter for migrant youths.

At the time, Trump’s sartorial choice sparked a firestorm of debate over her intended meaning. By the time she was in front of the children, she had taken off the jacket.

Asked Thursday about her “LOVE” jacket, Jill Biden told reporters, “I think that we’re bringing love from America.”

“This is a global conference, and we are trying to bring unity across the globe,” she said. “And I think it’s needed right now — that people feel a sense of unity from all the countries and feel a sense of hope after this year of the pandemic.”

Abha Bhattarai contributed to this report.