Global Political Calendar: Western splits, China-Arab talks
Updated 19:20, 02-Aug-2018
A big week in global politics lies ahead, with the Middle East on the agenda in China and Russia, and fireworks expected when President Trump flies to Europe for a two-day NATO summit and a visit to Britain.

China-Arab states

Chinese President Xi Jinping meets with Kuwait's Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber al-Sabah, and on Tuesday will deliver a speech at the opening ceremony of the eighth ministerial meeting of China-Arab States Cooperation Forum. The Belt and Road Initiative is expected to feature prominently, and a senior Foreign Ministry official said Xi would elaborate on the "China Solution" to peace and development issues in the Middle East. Russian President Vladimir Putin will also welcome guests from the Middle East this week, meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas separately in Moscow.

Western dis-alliance?

Prepare for a showdown at the two-day NATO summit – Donald Trump wrote to other leaders accusing them of undermining the alliance by under-spending on defense. The US president, who will meet Putin the week after, has been a frequent critic of the 29-strong group -- there has been speculation it could be next on his hit list of multilateral organizations. He is expected to be met by mass protests when the summit begins in Brussels on Wednesday, and widespread demonstrations – and a giant baby blimp -- when he moves on to Britain on Friday. There could be protests at home too, with his Supreme Court pick likely to cause controversy.

Trade tiff

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang continues his European tour in Germany, days after the US imposed tariffs worth 34 billion US dollars on China. Germany, via the EU, has also been a target of US trade tariffs over the past month and the White House has been particularly aggressive about the European country's car industry. Trade will no doubt be on the agenda when Li meets German Chancellor Angela Merkel ahead of the EU-China summit scheduled to take place in Beijing later in July.


Monday: Premier Li will hold talks with Merkel in Berlin, Kuwait's Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber al-Sabah will continue his visit to Beijing, China's top legislature will meet to review a report on the implementation of the air pollution control law, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will be sworn in for a second term, and Trump is expected to announce his Supreme Court pick.
Tuesday: President Xi Jinping will address representatives from 21 Arab countries at the eighth ministerial meeting of China-Arab States Cooperation Forum, an ASEAN Defense Senior Officials' Meeting will take place in Singapore, and Britain hosts a Western Balkans leaders' summit.
Wednesday: Brussels will host a two-day NATO leaders summit, an EU-Japan free trade agreement is expected to be signed at a bilateral summit, also in the Belgian capital, Netanyahu meets Putin in Moscow, and South Korean President Moon Jae-in visits Singapore.
Thursday: NATO leaders meet for the second day of talks, and the China-Africa Defense and Security Forum is scheduled to conclude after more than two weeks in Beijing.
Friday: Prime Minister Theresa May will welcome Trump for a four-day visit to Britain, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas meets with Putin in Moscow, and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will meet Mexican president-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.
Saturday: Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will be guest of honor at the French National Day parade in Paris.
Sunday: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visits Egypt and Saudi Arabia.