International Travel

Scott Morrison’s awkward moment at G7 summit in France

Scott Morrison’s awkward moment at G7 summit in France

Scott Morrison was left standing by himself as other world leaders mingled at the G7 Summit in France.

In a photo opportunity, the Australian prime minister was spotted standing on his own and fumbling with his phone without getting much acknowledgment from other dignitaries, including US president Donald Trump, British prime minister Boris Johnson and German chancellor Angela Merkel.

After the photo of the world leaders was taken, Morrison stayed at the back of the group while the others were joined by their partners.

The Project highlighted the moment in a segment on Monday night. “Why is nobody hanging out with our prime minister?” host Pete Helliar asked.

“Probably don’t like him,” Steve Price said.

The rest of Morrison’s visit has been more successful, with the PM making a brief, friendly discussion on cricket with his British counterpart Johnson.

Morrison congratulated Johnson on England’s win in the third Ashes test against Australia before moving on to diplomatic matters such as free trade and joint military mission near Iran. “Well, we’ve got two to go, we’re not taking anything for granted,” Johnson said.

In the 45th G7 summit, the leaders of the seven country members – France, Germany, Britain, Italy, the US, Canada and Japan – came together to discuss global economic, political, social and security issues. Australia joined the summit as an observer alongside India, Chile and South Africa.

On Sunday, Morrison met with several world leaders. He said he discussed Australia’s decision last week to contribute troops, a surveillance plane and a Navy frigate to help in the US-led effort to protect shipping lanes from Iran during meetings with Merkel and Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe.

“[They had] a great respect for the way that Australia thinks through these issues and is very clear about how we pursue our national interests and do so in a way which is very, very well-targeted,” Morrison told reporters.

He also spoke about the contribution during meetings with Johnson and Trump. When he sat down with the latter, Morrison reiterated Australia’s concerns about the escalating US-China trade dispute and its impact on the global economy. Trump announced a further increase in tariffs ahead of the France event.

“These types of responses, I would say they’re fairly obvious in terms of how that would play out until this matter is resolved,” Morrison said. He said while both sides had raised legitimate grievances about the other, “you can’t just sort of brush these issues aside forever, they have to be dealt with”.