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Climate protesters prepare in Italy as leaders gather for G7 summit

Protesters gather at a camp ahead of a demonstration against the G7 summit in Fattizze D'Arneo, southern Italy, Thursday, June 13, 2024   -  
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Gregorio Borgia/Copyright 2024 The AP. All rights reserved.


Dozens of international demonstrators gathered in Puglia on Thursday to prepare for this Saturday's protest against the G7 summit that is taking place in Borgo Egnazia.

Italy is hosting the summit of the Group of Seven leading industrialized nations, hosted by Italian Premier Giorgia Meloni.

In Fattizze d'Arneo, at one of three campsites activists have gathered, protesters are preparing banners for the demonstration while holding thematic panels on international summit issues.

The campsite chosen by the protesters is a symbolic place: it is an area reforested by the community that has been living for years in conflict with the nearby Porsche Technical Center, a giant racing ring that recently made headlines for the European Commission's rejection of a project, signed with the Puglia region, that would have involved the expropriation of additional adjoining land and the eradication of hectares of ancient D'Arneo forest trees.

Nicholas Omonuk, an activist from Uganda, said he joined the 'No G7' camp because people from the "Global South are the ones that face issues with climate change."

"We're the ones that face most of the crises, and most of these crises are caused by the G7 countries or the Global North countries," he added.

The G7 summit through Saturday is focusing on global conflicts, the spread of artificial intelligence and on Africa issues, particularly Italy’s longstanding concern about uncontrolled migration to Europe from the continent.

Perennial issues such as climate change and China also will be discussed.

The G7 is an informal forum with an annual summit to discuss economic policy and security issues.

The members are Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States.