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Putin visits Beijing as Russia and China emphasize ‘no limits’ relationship amid tensions with US

Beijing — Russian President Vladimir Putin thanked Chinese leader Xi Jinping for His efforts to resolve the war in Ukraine Thursday at a summit in Beijing, where the two leaders reaffirmed a “boundless” partnership that has grown as both countries face growing tensions with the West.

Putin’s two-day state visit to one of his most powerful allies comes as his country’s forces launch an offensive in Ukraine’s northeastern Kharkiv region – the incursion the most important border crossing since the start of the large-scale invasion in February 2022.

The largely symbolic visit highlighted the growing partnership between two countries that both face challenges in their relations with the United States and Europe.

“Both sides want to show that despite what is happening globally, despite the pressure both sides are under from the United States, the two sides are not about to turn their backs on each other any time soon.” , said Hoo Tiang Boon, a professor who studies Chinese foreign policy at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.

There is talk of peace in Ukraine, but no proposals

While both leaders have said they seek to end the war in Ukraine, they offered no new details in their public remarks Thursday afternoon. China wields significant influence as a key supporter of Russia, before and since its invasion. The country claims to take a neutral stance in the conflict, but it supports Moscow’s claims that Russia was incited to attack Ukraine by the West, and continues to supply Russia with key components Moscow needs to its weapons production.

China has proposed a broadly worded peace plan in 2023, but he was rejected by Ukraine and the West for not calling on Russia to leave the occupied parts of Ukraine.

“China hopes for Europe’s early return to peace and stability and will continue to play a constructive role in this regard,” Xi said, speaking alongside Putin.

Taking stock of the latest developments in Ukraine’s war against Russia


Putin said he would inform the Chinese leader in detail about “the situation in Ukraine”, and said “we appreciate the initiative of our Chinese colleagues and friends to regulate the situation.”

The two-year-old war has entered a critical phase with the new Russian offensive in Ukraine. The exhausted kyiv army still waiting for new supplies anti-aircraft missiles and artillery shells from the United States after months of delay.

On the eve of his visit, Putin said in an interview with Chinese media that the Kremlin was ready to negotiate on the conflict in Ukraine, “but such negotiations must take into account the interests of all countries involved in the conflict, including including ours.

Putin said the Chinese proposal rejected by Ukraine last year could “lay the foundations for a political and diplomatic process that would take into account Russia’s security concerns and help achieve long-term sustainable peace “.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said any negotiations must include the restoration of Ukraine’s territorial integrity, the withdrawal of Russian troops, the release of all prisoners, the creation of a court for those responsible for the aggression and security guarantees for Ukraine.

Ukraine’s Zelensky warns of risks to US if Putin doesn’t stop


The Ukrainian leader warned recently in an interview with CBS News that if the United States and NATO fail to help their military stop Putin’s advance, Russia could wage its war directly “in Europe and the United States”, as the largest member of the NATO.

The growing “no holds barred” relations between China and Russia

Before their speech, the two leaders signed a joint declaration on deepening the comprehensive strategic partnership between their countries on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. Xi said China and Russia would continue to maintain a stance of non-alliance and non-confrontation.

The two autocratic countries – which had suggested two years ago that they were working together to propose a new “democratic world order” — also said in their joint statement on Thursday that they would continue to reflect on the negative impact of US and NATO strategy in the Asia-Pacific region.

China has recently become increasingly assertive in its claims to a number of disputed territories in the region, with tensions between Beijing and the United States have focused on the future of the democratically governed island of Taiwan, located just off China’s east coast. Xi has pledged to assert Chinese control over the island, which the United States is required by law to help defend, and he has never ruled out the use of force.

Japan’s increased military presence on the small island of Ishigaki is frustrating residents.


Thursday’s meeting was a further affirmation of the “no holds barred” friendly relationship that the two leaders formalized in 2022, just before Russia launches its full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

Since then, Russia has become increasingly economically dependent on China, with Western sanctions reducing Moscow’s access to much of the international trading system. Growing trade between China and Russia, totaling $240 billion last year, has helped the country mitigate some of the worst impacts of sanctions.

Moscow has diverted most of its energy exports to China and relies on Chinese companies to import high-tech components for its military industries – to circumvent Western sanctions.

“President Putin and I agree that we should actively seek points of convergence of interests of the two countries, develop each other’s advantages and deepen the integration of interests, realizing each other’s achievements” , Mr. Xi said.

Military ties between Russia and China have also strengthened in recent years. They held a joint war game seriesincluding naval exercises and long-range bomber patrols over the Sea of ​​Japan and the East China Sea.

How the US Navy is preparing for possible Chinese aggression against Taiwan


China remains a major market for Russian military hardware, while Beijing is also massively expanding its domestic defense industries, including build aircraft carriers and nuclear submarines.

Putin has previously said that Russia shares highly sensitive military technologies with China, which has helped significantly strengthen its defense capability. In October 2019, he mentioned that Russia was helping China develop an early warning system to spot ballistic missile launches – a system involving ground radar and satellites that only Russia and the United States had.


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