G7 leaders gathered for a 'family photo' on an English beach, and Biden joked they should jump in the water

·2 min read
G7 family photo
The 2021 G7 family photo in Cornwall, England. Leon Neal/Getty Images

This year's Group of 7 "family photo" was taken on a beach in Cornwall, England, with world leaders' windswept hair stealing the show.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was front and center, with President Joe Biden - who is on his first trip abroad as commander in chief - to his right. The other leaders in the photo included Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, President of the European Council Charles Michel, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, and President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen.

The leaders of the G7, an organization of some of the largest economies, and EU leaders are discussing a variety of topics at this year's summit - with a major focus on the COVID-19 pandemic.

Biden, whose political career has in many ways been defined by a focus on foreign policy, appears relaxed and in his element in the photo.

"Everybody in the water," Biden jokingly said as the leaders gathered to pose for the shot. He walked up with Macron, each with an arm draped around each other's back.

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There appeared to be less-visible tension in this year's photo among the leaders with former President Donald Trump out of the picture.

Trump had a tendency to confront US allies on a variety of issues - especially trade - and his leadership style placed strains on relations with key partners.

trump G7
President Donald Trump after a family photo at the G7 Summit expanded session in Taormina, Italy, on May 27, 2017. Thomson Reuters

A recent Pew Research Center survey showed that the US's global approval rating had improved significantly with Trump gone and Biden at the helm, particularly among close allies in Europe.

In all of the 16 countries surveyed, more than six in 10 said they had confidence in Biden to do the right thing in world affairs, Pew said. In 12 nations surveyed both this year and last year, a median of 75% expressed confidence in Biden, compared with just 17% for Trump in 2020.

Biden has made restoring confidence in the US a major priority, and his eight-day trip to Europe in many ways serves as his audition to the world in that regard. In addition to visiting the UK, Biden is set to visit Brussels for NATO and EU summits. Subsequently, he'll head to Geneva for a highly anticipated meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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