This photo of Angela Merkel and Barack Obama, immersed in conversation at the G 7 summit in June of 2015 at Schloss Elmau in Bavaria, became iconic as a representation of their close and comfortable working relationship. Among the topics of discussion at the summit were sanctions against Russia following the annexation of Crimea in 2014. Russia was excluded from the G 8 following the annexation. Merkel and Obama forged a close partnership, driven by mutual political interests. Both supported cooperation between the U.S. and the European Union on climate change, anti-terror measures and transatlantic trade. Obama supported Merkel during the humanitarian crisis in 2015 and praised her position to welcome refugees from Syria to Germany during that year. Their political friendship survived the spying scandal when leaks revealed that the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) had, among others, eavesdropped on Angela Merkel’s mobile phone conversations.

Angela Merkel and Barack Obama (June 8, 2015)


Source: "We were at the G7 Summit in Krün, Germany. Chancellor Angela Merkel asked the leaders and outreach guests to make their way to a bench for a group photograph. The President happened to sit down first, followed closely by the Chancellor. I only had time to make a couple of frames before the background was cluttered with other people." (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza). June 8, 2015. Available from Wikimedia Commons, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Merkel_and_Obama_at_G7_2015_Pete_Souza.jpg