China’s Xi to satisfy Putin in Russia subsequent week


Chinese chief Xi Jinping will journey to Russia subsequent week to satisfy together with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin within the strongest present of Beijing’s assist for Moscow because the conflict in Ukraine started.

China’s Foreign Ministry and the Kremlin mentioned in separate statements on Friday that Xi will go to Russia from Monday to Wednesday. The Kremlin mentioned the 2 would focus on methods of “deepening Russian-Chinese cooperation,” including that “a number of important bilateral documents will be signed” throughout Xi’s go to.

Chinese overseas ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin mentioned Xi’s go to can be a visit of “peace, cooperation and friendship,” stressing that China would promote peace talks. The go to can be Xi’s first to Russia because the starting of the Ukraine disaster.

“China’s proposition can be summed up in one sentence, which is to persuade peace and promote talks,” Wang mentioned on Friday at an everyday press briefing.

Xi’s resolution to journey to Russia is a present of defiance within the face of more and more loud U.S. criticism of Beijing’s “no limits” partnership with Moscow, declared simply weeks earlier than Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. The journey additionally highlights Russia’s rising dependence on China, considered one of its few remaining pals and buying and selling companions.

With Russia go to, Xi pursues effort to upend U.S.-led international order

Throughout the conflict, China has tried to strike a steadiness between sustaining its friendship with Russia whereas not endorsing the conflict. Instead, China has sought to place itself as a mediator on the facet of peace, whereas blaming the disaster on the United States and NATO.

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In February, Beijing launched a 12-point proposal for ending the conflict that included requires talks, a cease-fire and an finish to “unilateral sanctions” however no calls for for Russian withdrawal from Ukrainian territory.

Yet the go to may undermine China’s efforts to seem impartial. Beijing has refused to sentence Putin’s actions, whereas boosting commerce with Russia and holding joint army workouts. Xi and Putin have spoken a number of occasions because the conflict started, together with at a gathering on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan in September.

When Putin hosted China’s high diplomat Wang Yi final month, the Russian chief mentioned the connection had reached “new milestones.”

Washington has accused Beijing of contemplating offering “lethal support” to Russia — a declare that Beijing has criticized as “false information.”

Xi is anticipated to have a cellphone name with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky after the journey, in keeping with the Wall Street Journal. It can be their first dialog because the conflict started. Asked a couple of potential name, China’s overseas ministry on Tuesday declined to remark.

Serhiy Nykyforov, Ukrainian presidential spokesperson, in response as to if Zelensky and Xi will communicate, advised The Washington Post in a textual content message, “There are no specific agreements about this yet. But this topic, among others, was discussed by foreign ministers of Ukraine and China. So we can say that the work is in progress.”

On Thursday, Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang spoke together with his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba by cellphone. Qin advised Kuleba that China had “committed itself to promoting peace and advancing negotiations” in keeping with a press release from China’s Foreign Ministry.

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Kuleba posted on Twitter that he and Qin had “discussed the significance of the principle of territorial integrity.”

A go to to Russia by Xi suits with a decades-long custom of Chinese leaders making Russia their first cease after cementing energy at residence. The journey can be Xi’s first overseas go to after a legislative congress earlier this month the place he was formally reelected as president. Xi additionally traveled to Russia for his first overseas go to as president in March 2013.

During this go to, Moscow can be seeking to China for assist. Russia is determined by China for a lot of its imports, together with know-how like semiconductors that can be utilized in each army and civilian purposes.

“Russia increasingly has fewer and fewer options, and is increasingly a junior partner to China,” mentioned Alexander Gabuev, an knowledgeable on Russia-China relations on the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

David Stern in Kyiv and Meaghan Tobin, Vic Chiang and Pei-Lin Wu in Taipei contributed to this report.

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