Russia and China ‘share similar goals’, Xi tells Putin
|China’s president Xi Jinping has told Vladimir Putin that Moscow and Beijing “share similar goals” and called the Russian president his “dear friend” during talks at the Kremlin. At the start of his three-day state visit to Russia, Mr Xi also told Putin that he was convinced Russians would support him in a presidential election due in 2024, even though the Russian president has not yet said if he will seek another term. Meanwhile, Putin said that Russia was open to discussing China’s 12-point peace plan to end the war in Ukraine. “We are always open to negotiations,” he said. “We will certainly discuss all these issues, including your initiatives which we treat with respect.”
Mr Xi’s trip serves as a show of support for the internationally isolated Russian president, just days after a war crimes tribunal issued a warrant for his arrest over the accusation of unlawfully deporting Ukrainian children. Shortly after landing in Moscow, Mr Xi said his visit would give “new momentum” to Chinese-Russian ties. The summit comes as China seeks to portray itself as a neutral party in the Ukraine conflict. But Washington has accused Beijing of mulling arms exports to Moscow – claims China has vociferously denied.
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|Vladimir Putin admitted to being “slightly envious” of China, as he told Xi Jinping he would consider Beijing’s proposals for a ceasefire in Ukraine at the beginning of a high-stakes summit in the Kremlin. The White House said it was watching the Moscow summit “carefully” but warned a ceasefire that cemented Russian gains would be rejected. Mr Xi and Putin greeted one another as “dear friends”, as the Chinese president arrived in Moscow on Monday for three days of talks.
|Vladimir Putin meets Xi Jinping at the Kremlin in Moscow on Monday Credit: AFP|
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