On Wednesday, the leader of China, Xi Jinping, departed Russia after engaging in discussions with Russian President Vladimir Putin for three days. The visit was a significant show of China’s support for Russia, coming shortly after the ICC’s arrest warrant for Putin over alleged war crimes.
According to the Kremlin list, the meeting resulted in over a dozen agreements to enhance trade, technology, and state propaganda cooperation. The leaders’ central statement also focused on how both countries would deepen their relationship in view of the current situation. Here are some key points from their discussion:
No Significant Progress On The Issue Of Ukraine
While their meeting took place under the shadow of Russia’s onslaught in Ukraine, there were no breakthroughs in resolving the conflict.
However, in a joint statement, both leaders urged to stop actions that have escalated tensions and prolonged the war in Ukraine. They also urged NATO to respect other countries’ sovereignty, security, and interests, reflecting continued blame of the security alliance for Russia’s invasion.
As reported by Al Jazeera, Putin stated that “The Chinese proposal could be taken as the basis for a peaceful settlement in Ukraine.” However, the West and Ukraine have deemed the proposal unacceptable, as it lacks a provision for Moscow to withdraw its troops.
The Stance Against The United States
Speculations suggest that a key driving force behind this meeting is both nations’ desire to strengthen their alignment against the US. In their joint statement, the two leaders called for a “multipolar world”, which implies a system not led by western values and rules.
They also criticized Washington, citing how US actions undermine global security and stability to uphold its military dominance.
There has been increased economic collaboration between China and Russia over the past years, and we can expect to see more following XI’s visit to Russia. The West has imposed sanctions on both nations for different reasons and with varying levels of impact.
However, these sanctions have brought them together in the hope of challenging dollar and euro supremacy in the global market. Both nations highlight their commitment to building closer energy partnerships and supporting companies in various energy sectors.
Other Key Points
XI’s meeting with Putin enforced “military trust” and defense ties between both nations. They aim to strengthen their military cooperation through joint maritime and aerial patrols. Furthermore, the Moscow summit also evidences a divided world, particularly following the meeting in Ukraine between Zelensky and Japanese leader Kishida.
The details and circumstances of the China/Russia talks may come at a cost for China’s other relations. Clearly, Xi’s visit prioritizes China’s relationship with Russia over any other bilateral relationship they may have.
As reported by Reuters, China firmly advocates respecting and safeguarding all countries’ sovereignty and territorial integrity. However, this meeting is unlikely to win China many European friends, particularly as Europe firmly supports Ukraine.