Xi Tells Russia’s Medvedev That China Wants Talks on Ukraine
(Bloomberg) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping told former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev that his nation would like to see talks on Ukraine, comments that come as Beijing tries to improve ties with Europe.
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Xi told Medvedev in Beijing that his administration has been “actively promoting peace and talks,” according to state broadcaster China Central Television.
“China hopes relevant parties can stay rational and restrained, conduct comprehensive talks, and resolve mutual concerns on security via political methods,” Xi said. Beijing still wants to work with Russia to develop ties, he added.
China has avoided criticizing Russia over the war in Ukraine, blaming the expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization for Moscow’s actions. Beijing did sign off on a communique at the Group of 20 summit in Indonesia in November that said “most members strongly condemned the war in Ukraine,” but continues to refrain from calling it a war.
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Since a congress of the ruling Communist Party in October, Xi has been working to prevent already strained relations with the European Union from worsening. Last year, the EU halted an investment agreement with China after both sides traded sanctions over Xinjiang, where the US has accused Beijing of genocide. China denies those allegations.
In November, Xi told German Chancellor Olaf Scholz that he opposed the use of nuclear force in Europe, underscoring Beijing’s desire to keep Russia’s war in Ukraine from escalating. This month, he used talks with visiting European Council President Charles Michel to call for efforts to resolve the crisis.
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