Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron speaks at the G8 UK Innovation Conference at the Siemens Crystal Building in London, Friday June 14, 2013. As part of UK’s G8 Presidency, the G8 Innovation Conference brings together 300 leading international entrepreneurs, researchers, scientists, designers and policy makers. (AP Photo/Facundo Arrizabalaga, Pool)
ENNISKILLEN, Northern Ireland (AP) — Europe is mired in debt and recession. Financial markets have hit violent ups and downs on fears that U.S. stimulus efforts may soon be scaled back. Japan is finally looking up after years of stagnation — but it remains an open question if the recovery will stick.
That’s the global economy that will confront the heads of the Group of Eight leading economies as they gather Monday and Tuesday for their annual summit in Northern Ireland.
British Prime Minister David Cameron will serve as summit host for U.S. President Barack Obama and the leaders of Germany, Italy, Canada, France, Japan and Russia. At the top of the agenda: New cooperation to fight tax evasion and increase transparency among governments. Also on the table will be how much help to give to rebels in Syria, and a push for lower trade barriers between the United States and the European Union.
On the sidelines and over dinner, it’s expected that the discussions will broaden to include the election results in Iran and data protection, following revelations about a U.S. counterterror surveillance program.
As always, the summit takes place under heavy security, guarded by 8,000 police backed by water cannon. The venue itself is surrounded by extensive security fences, and on three sides by water. There’s only one access road to the closest town, Enniskillen, some 5 miles (8 kilometers) away.
While its peace process has been hailed worldwide as a success story, Northern Ireland remains a society troubled by deep-seated divisions between Catholics and Protestants. Officials have said trouble away from the summit site can’t be ruled Login to read more