UPDATE 1-G7 condemns Russia Ukraine move, halts G8 prep -White House
WASHINGTON, March 2 (Reuters) - The Group of Seven major industrialized nations on Sunday condemned Russia's intrusion into Ukraine and canceled for now preparations for the G8 summit that includes Russia and had been scheduled to take place in Sochi in June, the White House said.
"We, the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States and the President of the European Council and President of the European Commission, join together today to condemn the Russian Federation's clear violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine," the G7 said in a statement.
"We have decided for the time being to suspend our participation in activities associated with the preparation of the scheduled G8 Summit in Sochi in June," the group said.
The G7 urged Russia to hold talks with Ukraine directly or with international participation to address any human rights or security concerns it has.
The group further expressed support for Ukraine's bid to secure financial help from the International Monetary Fund and to make reforms to its economy.
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