It's all on again. The G8 summit, and associated protests - on again in north German port of Rostock, this year. The leaders of the Great 8 are summarised here.
Climate change and aid for Africa are high on the agenda this year, however US President George Bush called on the world’s leading economies to join the US in agreeing a global target to reduce carbon dioxide emissions before the end of his term in office. Ironically, right on cue, Aussie PM John Howard also announced his policy of making carbon trading as an essential tool to curb global warming - in 2012 when he won't even be PM..
The last time the G8 was in Germany was in 1999. The meetings start Wednesday but the protests have already started. Masked demonstrators showered police with grapefruit-sized rocks and beer bottles, then were driven back with water cannon and tear gas during a protest march. Clashes left smoke from burning cars and the sting of tear gas drifting through the Rostock harbour front area. Some 146 police were hurt, 18 of them seriously.
A fence has been built around the venue to stop demonstrators getting too close, and 13,000 Police are employed to protect the venue. Organisers said they were expecting 100,000 people from anti-poverty and anti-globalisation groups to demonstrate during the week.
They are calling for swift movement on climate change, an increase in development aid and an abolition of the “elitist” G8 process.