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Putin Invites Xi to Moscow to Strengthen Military Ties

Xi stated that China will continue to take an "objective and fair" stance on the conflict in Ukraine

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Sadaf Hasan
Sadaf Hasan
Aspiring reporter covering trending topics

RUSSIA: Vladimir Putin on Friday invited his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, to visit Russia on a state visit in the spring of next year in an effort to deepen ties with China in the face of Moscow’s escalating isolation as a result of the conflict in Ukraine.

Putin invites Xi to Russia during a video conference

During a videoconference, Putin invited Xi to visit Moscow, saying that the ties between the two countries are the “best in history.” He also expressed his wish to increase military cooperation.

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Without mentioning the Ukrainian conflict, Putin stated that “in the face of unprecedented pressure and provocations from the west,” he and Xi held the same views.

In an eight-minute introductory speech aired on state television, Putin welcomed Xi and said, “Dear Chairman, dear friend, we look forward to welcoming you to Moscow on a state visit next spring.”

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In response, Xi said that his nation was prepared to “increase strategic cooperation with Russia” and that he wanted to keep China and Russia as “global allies for the good of the peoples of our countries and in the interests of world stability.”

As per the official translation into Russian, the Chinese leader made no mention of visiting Moscow. According to Xi, his nation will continue to take an “objective and fair” stance on the conflict in Ukraine.

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Analysts eagerly monitored the meeting for any indication that China was rethinking its support for Putin as the Russian battle sputtered.

Since the beginning of the invasion, Beijing has attempted to maintain a balance between its support for Moscow and its desire to prevent the indirect effects of western sanctions on its economy.

While Beijing has accused the west of inflaming tensions in Ukraine, it has refrained from arming Moscow, and its businesses have mostly complied with the unprecedented western restrictions placed on Russian trade.

Alexander Gabuev, senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said, “Everyone wants to know if Xi is having second thoughts about Putin. However, today’s call suggests that Xi does not want to throw Putin under the bus. The two countries’ ties will further strengthen in the coming year.”

Gabuev also pointed out the rapid expansion of economic ties between the two nations since the start of the conflict, with China now making up more than a quarter of all imports into Russia, as per the Washington-based Institute of International Finance.

Chinese customs data also reveals that the two nations’ bilateral trade surged by 32% in 2022, reaching a record $172.406 billion between January and November of this year.

Hundreds of western enterprises fled Moscow in the days after the invasion began, leaving a void that was promptly filled by Chinese businesses. The only foreign automobile brands still available on the Russian market, 11 of them, are Chinese, according to a recent article by the RBC business outlet.

The call between the two presidents came hours after Ukraine was once again struck by “kamikaze” drones built in Iran. The Ukrainian military stated that the 16 drones, which it said were launched from the southeast and the north, were all shot down.

Also Read: Ukraine’s President Zelenskiy Attends U.S. Congress, Urges More Military Aid

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