“We highly value the balanced position of our Chinese friends when it comes to the Ukraine crisis,” Putin told Xi in
their first meeting since the war began.
“We understand your questions and concerns about this. During today’s meeting, we will of course explain our position.”“, has added.
Xi has not mentioned Ukraine in his public comments, nor mentioned in a statement from their meeting. China has openly criticized NATO’s expansion to the Russian border, but never supported the Russian military campaign in Ukraine, country with which Beijing maintains a good relationship.
For his part, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has denied discrepancies with China over Ukraine. “We have a total agreement in the assessment of the international situation. There is no discrepancy here. We will continue to coordinate our actions, including in the imminent UN General Assembly,” Lavrov told Russian public television.
Despite this, Russia wanted to stage a good harmony between the two countries and after the meeting, Putin has condemned the “provocations” of the United States in the Taiwan Strait and has called on Xi Jinping to lead “a rapidly changing world” together.
“We condemn the provocations of the US and its satellites in the Taiwan Strait,” Putin said during the meeting between the two held in the Uzbek city of Samarkand.
The last meeting, three weeks before the war
Putin, who last met with Xi in Beijing three weeks before the start of Russia’s military campaign in Ukraine, also stressed that Moscow supports the “one China” principle.
The Russian leader has valued the fact that Beijing has always maintained a “balanced stance” on Ukraine. “We understand your questions and concerns, and during today’s meeting, of course, we will explain in detail our position on this matter, although we have already talked about it before,” he said.
For its part, Xi has been willing to work with the Kremlin to lead a changing world. “Faced with the great changes of our time at the global level, never before seen in all of history, we stand ready with Russian colleagues to set an example as responsible world powers and play a leading role in steering that rapidly changing world onto a trajectory of stable and positive development”, he pointed out.
Xi, who has called his Russian counterpart “dear friend”has highlighted that both have maintained “strategic contacts” even during the coronavirus pandemic.
Meanwhile, the Russian leader has pointed out that “attempts to create a unipolar world have lately acquired a repugnant and absolutely unacceptable aspect for most countries in the world.”
Putin and Xi will participate tonight in an official dinner on the eve of the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, led by Russia and China, and in which Iran today signed a memorandum of accession.
The US sees “curious” that Putin recognizes the concerns
The United States has found it “curious” but not “surprising” that Russia’s president has acknowledged that his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, has “concerns” about the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
“President Putin has apparently admitted, according to the media, that President Xi has concerns about the war. China’s concerns are not surprising, but it is a curious thing that Putin has admitted it so openly,” said the Department’s spokesman. of State, Ned Price, at a press conference.
Price has opined that Beijing has been doing “geopolitical gymnastics” for months so as not to openly criticize the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
But he does not find it surprising that China is concerned about this issue, given that in international forums Beijing usually defends as something “inviolable” the principle of sovereignty, which has been “assaulted” by Moscow by occupying Ukraine, the spokesman said.