Biden, Scholz land in Japan for G7 amid ramped up security measures

U.S President, Joe Biden

U.S. President Joe Biden arrived in Japan on Thursday ahead of the Group of Seven (G7) summit of leading democratic industrial nations.

Biden’s plane touched down at a military airport to the south of the host city, Hiroshima, in southern Japan.

German Chancellor, Olaf Scholz, also arrived on Thursday, before the official start of talks on Friday.

In addition to the United States and Germany, the G7 includes France, Italy, Britain, Japan and Canada.

Representatives of the European Union will also be at the meeting.

The war in Ukraine, the state of the global economy and the West’s relationship with China are set to top the agenda of the leaders’ discussions.

The talks are being accompanied by extensive security measures.

According to the police, some 24,000 security personnel from all over Japan are on duty during the meeting, which runs until Sunday.

The Peace Memorial Park, which the heads of state and government are visiting for the opening ceremony, has been cordoned off with a two metre-high fence.

Access to the atomic bomb dome is also blocked.

The burnt-out building was damaged when the U.S. dropped an atomic bomb on the city in 1945 at the end of World War II, and is now a symbol of peace and a testament to the horror of nuclear weapons.

Boats were patrolling up and down the river around the Peace Park on Thursday.

Around 140 schools were closed in the face of severe traffic restrictions.

The tightened security measures come against the backdrop of a recent attack on Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, in which he was unharmed.

His predecessor Shinzo Abe had been shot dead at an election rally a few months earlier. (dpa/NAN)

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