Putin and Xi Cement joint in the face of Western pressure

  • Xi accused the West of interfering in Chinese affairs
  • According to the Kremlin, Putin G supports security guarantees
  • Putin and Xi are expected to meet at the Beijing Winter Olympics in February
  • Trade between Russia and China rises sharply – Putin

MOSCOW, Dec. 15 (Reuters) – Presidents Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping agreed in a video conference Wednesday that Russia and China must stand firm in rejecting Western intervention and safeguarding mutual security interests.

Their conversation, eight days after Putin spoke in a similar vein with US President Joe Biden, underscores how shared hostility with the West brings Moscow and Beijing closer together.

“Currently, under the guise of ‘democracy’ and ‘human rights’, some international powers are interfering in the internal affairs of China and Russia, and are brutally trampling on the rules of international law and recognized international relations,” the Chinese government-run Xinhua news agency said. The company quoted Xi as saying.

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“China and Russia need to step up their joint efforts to more effectively defend the security interests of both sides.”

Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov told reporters that he understood Moscow’s concerns and supported Xi’s push for Putin’s security guarantees from the West to Russia.

He said they had both expressed their “negative views” on the formation of new military alliances, such as the AUKUS alliance between Australia, Britain and the United States, and Australia, India, Japan and the Indo-Pacific “Quad” of the United States.

Pressure

The call highlights the ways in which Russia and China are pulling each other out for mutual support at a time of high tensions in relations with the West. China has been under pressure over human rights and has been accused of behaving in a threatening Russian manner against Ukraine.

The Kremlin said it had briefed Putin on his talks with Biden, in which the US president warned Russia against invading Ukraine – which Moscow denies was planned – and put forward his demand for Putin’s security pledges.

“Among other things, a new paradigm of cooperation has been developed between our countries on the basis of principles such as non-interference in internal affairs and respect for mutual interests,” Putin told the Associated Press.

He said he was looking forward to meeting Xi at the Winter Olympics in Beijing – the White House said last week that US government officials would boycott human rights abuses against Muslims in western China’s Xinjiang.

“I want to note that we have always supported each other on issues of international sports cooperation, including rejecting any attempt to politicize the sport and the Olympic movement,” Putin said.

Putin used Russia’s alliance with China as a means of balancing US influence, while at the same time making lucrative deals, especially in energy. He and Xi agreed to extend their 20-year friendship and cooperation agreement this year.

The Russian leader said bilateral trade had increased by 31% to $ 123 billion in the first 11 months of this year and that both countries aim to cross $ 200 billion in the future.

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He said China was becoming an international hub for the production of Russia’s Sputnik and Sputnik Lite vaccines against COVID-19, and had signed agreements with six manufacturers to produce more than 150 million doses.

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Additional report by Ryan Woo and Ella Kao in Beijing; Edited by Gareth Jones by Mark Travelian

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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