Turkey's Erdogan, Saudi king agree to solve issues through dialogue -Turkish presidency

Elias Hubbard
November 21, 2020

In a bid to liven up the event, which takes place in a gloomy global atmosphere, Saudi Arabia's King Salman hosted an evening musical gala on the eve of the event and projected a group photo of the world leaders onto the ruins of the historical town of Diriyah, close to the capital Riyadh. The G-20's member-countries represent around 85% of the world's economic output and three-quarters of worldwide trade.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke with Saudi Arabia's King Salman by phone ahead of the G-20 virtual summit hosted by the kingdom, the president's office said Saturday.

The Turkish leader is due to address the summit via video link at 1300 GMT.

"Our fates are in each other's hands", he said.

In a statement Friday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said she planned to push members to continue to provide pandemic-related economic support until recovery from covid-19 is certain. During the G 20 Summit, the leaders will discuss pandemic preparedness and the ways and means to restore jobs.

"Our peoples and economies are still suffering from this shock".

Meanwhile, although not "officially" said to be on the agenda, campaigners and families of jailed activists have staged a "counter-summit" in hopes of throwing a spotlight on the ultra-conservative kingdom's human rights record.

G-20 heads of state last gathered virtually for an emergency meeting in March as the coronavirus was fast-spreading around the world. They also promised to work together to increase funding for vaccine research.

In his opening remarks, Saudi Arabia's King Salman spoke to a screen of worldwide leaders, including Trump, and highlighted the economic support G-20 members had contributed to combating the coronavirus pandemic and economic fallout. He will also encourage other leaders to step up and support the Covax initiative, to ensure developing countries are not frozen out of the race for a vaccine.

A day before the summit, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that while $10 billion has been invested in efforts to develop vaccines, diagnostics and therapeutics, another $28 billion is needed for mass manufacturing, procurement and delivery of new COVID-19 vaccines around the world. "It's the duty of the worldwide community to call on the release of Loujain".

He also commended the group for extending protections to those most impacted by the global economic recession, including a G-20 decision to suspend debt payments for the world's poorest countries until mid-2021 to allow those nations to focus their spending on health care and stimulus programs.

The ministers had extended a debt suspension initiative for developing countries until June next year.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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