As the two nations come closer together in the face of Western pressure, China has joined Russia in opposing further NATO expansion.
During Russia’s Vladimir Putin’s visit to Beijing for the Winter Olympics, Moscow and Beijing published a joint statement highlighting their agreement on a number of subjects.
Mr Putin says that Western nations are undermining Russia by leveraging the NATO defense alliance. It comes amid rising tensions over Ukraine, which Putin says he has no intention of invading.
The visit was Xi’s first face-to-face meeting with a foreign leader in over two years, as his country prepares to host the 2022 Winter Olympics. It also occurred as Western countries increased diplomatic efforts to de-escalate the Ukraine conflict.
French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz scheduled separate trips to Moscow and Kyiv in the coming weeks on Friday.
Approximately 100,000 Russian troops remain on the border with Ukraine, a former Soviet republic. Mr Putin, who has stated that Russians and Ukrainians are “one nation” has asked that Ukraine be denied membership in NATO.
Despite the fact that the long joint statement made no direct reference to Ukraine, the two nations accused NATO of promoting Cold War mentality.
The meetings, which the Kremlin described as “very warm” took place before of the Games’ opening ceremony. It was the first time the leaders had met in person since the outbreak began.
The two countries are “seriously concerned” about the Aukus security deal signed by the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia.
Aukus, which was announced last year, will see Australia develop nuclear-powered submarines as part of attempts to strengthen security in the Asia-Pacific area. It is widely regarded as an attempt to challenge China, which has been accused of inflaming tensions in disputed areas such as the South China Sea.
Meanwhile, Russia stated its support for Beijing’s One China policy, which states that self-ruled Taiwan is a renegade province that would ultimately reintegrate into China.
Taiwan, on the other hand, regards itself as an independent nation with its own constitution and freely elected officials.
In the midst of escalating rhetoric, the United States accused Russia on Wednesday of plotting a phony Ukrainian strike to justify an invasion.
Russia denied any plans to stage an assault, and the US provided no proof to back up its assertion.
Earlier, the US said that it will send extra soldiers to eastern Europe to protect NATO partners. Russia called the action “destructive” claiming that it validated its fears about NATO’s eastward expansion.