On Monday, China President Xi Jinping was received at the Kremlin by Russian President Vladimir Putin, sending a solid message to Western leaders supporting Ukraine that their attempts to isolate Moscow had failed.
Putin greeted Xi and appreciated his proposal to “solve the urgent problem in Ukraine.”
Just days after Xi’s visit gave Putin a political boost, an international arrest warrant was issued for him on charges of war crimes relating to Ukraine. This visit demonstrated Beijing’s new diplomatic swagger.
The two big powers have portrayed Xi’s three-day trip as an opportunity to expand their “no-limits friendship.” China looks to Russia as a source of oil and gas for its energy-hungry economy and as a partner in standing up to what both perceive as U.S. domination of world events.
The two nations are among the five permanent members of the United Nations. The Security Council also conducted joint military exercises.
The “full explanation” of Moscow’s activities in Ukraine would probably be discussed by Putin and Xi over dinner on Monday, according to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.
Peskov said Tuesday would see broader discussions, including representatives from both nations on various topics.
In light of Western attempts to isolate China, Putin views Xi’s visit as an excellent diplomatic victory.
Putin referred to Xi’s visit as a “landmark event” that “reaffirms the special nature of the Russia-China alliance” in a piece that appeared in the Chinese People’s Daily newspaper.
According to Putin, the meeting conveyed a clear message to Washington that the two nations aren’t willing to take measures to weaken them.
“The U.S. policy of simultaneously discouraging Russia and China, as well as all those who do not submit to the American diktat,” he wrote.
After the International Criminal Court in The Hague said Friday that it wanted to prosecute Putin for kidnapping thousands of children from Ukraine, Xi’s trip followed.
Although the nearly 13-month-long war in Ukraine significantly shadowed the negotiations, China depicts Xi’s visit as part of routine diplomatic contacts and has provided little insight into the trip’s objectives.
Monday’s daily briefing in Beijing featured Wang Wenbin, a representative for the foreign ministry, who described Xi’s trip as a “tour of friendship, cooperation, and peace.”
“China will defend its objective and fair perspective on the Ukrainian problem and play a positive role in advancing peace talks,” Wang said about the war.
After its recent success in mediating negotiations between Iran and its main Middle Eastern competitor, Saudi Arabia, which decided to reestablish diplomatic ties after years of hatred, Beijing has jumped into the Ukraine situation.
After that achievement, Xi called for China to take on a more significant role in overseeing international affairs.
“President Xi and President Putin will have a detailed exchange of views on bilateral relations and significant global and regional issues of mutual concern,” Wang added.
He said Xi wants to “inject new momentum into the development of bilateral relations and boost strategic coordination and practical collaboration between the two nations.”
Putin began his meeting with Xi Jinping. pic.twitter.com/A2eLT7XtlV
— NEXTA (@nexta_tv) March 20, 2023