‘Show them our pecs’: G7 leaders mock Putin’s bare-chested horse-riding
Boris Johnson and Justin Trudeau poke fun at Russian president’s penchant for stripping off during photoshoots
Leaders of the Group of Seven wealthy nations have mocked the macho image of Vladimir Putin at a meeting in Germany dominated by the Russian president’s invasion of Ukraine.
As the leaders sat down for their first meeting of the three-day G7 summit in the sweltering Bavarian Alps on Sunday, the British prime minister, Boris Johnson, asked if their jackets should come off – or if they should even disrobe further.
“We all have to show that we’re tougher than Putin,” Johnson said, to laughter from some of his colleagues. Johnson suggested the leaders “show them our pecs”.
“Bare-chested horseback riding,” suggested Canada’s Justin Trudeau. “Oh yes,” said European Commission president, Ursula von der Leyen. “Horseback riding is the best.”
Putin has been pictured shirtless several times in photos released by Russian state media, including one set in which he rode a brown horse while wearing wrap-around sunglasses, a gold chain and army trousers.
Another image from 2010 shows a bare-chested Putin carrying a hunting rifle during a trip in southern Siberia, while yet another shows the Russian leader wearing a wetsuit, carrying artefacts recovered while diving at an archaeological site off the Taman peninsula.
Other images released in the past decade show Putin sunbathing topless, swimming with dolphins and riding a submersible near Gotland island in the Baltic Sea.
At the G7 summit, leaders discussed efforts to further isolate Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, which has killed thousands of people and driven millions from their homes.
Britain, Canada, Japan and the United States proposed a ban on imports of gold from Russia, aimed at wealthy Russians who have been buying safe-haven bullion to reduce the financial impact of western sanctions.
The leaders gathered in the Bavarian Alps are also expected to discuss a possible price cap on Russian oil and efforts to tackle soaring global food and energy prices.
I don't think Ursula was in on the joke with her horse riding comment but jesus this whole thing reads like some off-brand Chris Morris skit.
"Sunbathing topless": errr that's how you usually do it. They also seem annoyed that Putin wore a wetsuit while diving.
It's credited to "Guardian staff with agencies" so clearly nobody wants to be associated with this garbage.