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G-20 Summit To Focus On European Economic Challenge

CHICAGO (AP) -- With global anxiety rising, President Barack Obama is searching for bolder, swifter signals from Europe that it will contain its financial mess and keep it from torpedoing the U.S. economy and his re-election chances along with it.

Yet as he prepares for summit talks beginning Monday in Mexico with the other world leaders, Obama is down to the power of persuasion and little else.

A looming, perilous Greek election and Europe's internal politics are controlling the debate.

Given the teetering global economy and the breadth of leaders about to gather in the coastal resort of Los Cabos, the Group of 20 summit meeting carries the weight of expectations it is not likely to meet. Most of its members are not part of Europe and they have no power to drive how the continent manages its crisis, although do they come looking for signs of progress and urgency.

That clearly is the case for Obama, locked in a tight election that may be decided singlehandedly by whether U.S. job growth sinks or climbs over the next five months.

While economic challenge will dominate the summit, the agenda runs deeper.

In talks on the sidelines, Obama will confront the bloodshed in Syria and the nuclear threat in Iran. He will meet with Vladimir Putin, who has returned to the presidency of Russia. Their talks will be scrutinized, given tense U.S.-Russian political relations and deep divisions over Syria.

Obama was to head to Mexico on Sunday night after a weekend with his family in their hometown of Chicago. The summit runs Monday and Tuesday.


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