Vladimir Putin in China. He met Xi Jinping

Russian President Vladimir Putin began a two-day state visit to China on Thursday at the invitation of President Xi Jinping. Putin was given full military honors in Beijing. The Chinese leader stressed that the two countries are “good neighbors, friends and partners” who will strengthen bilateral ties. “These relations are not against anyone,” Putin added.

Vladimir Putin, who arrived in Beijing on Thursday morning for a two-day visit, met with Xi Jinping. The Russian leader said relations between Beijing and Moscow were “opportunistic and not against anyone”. He said that Russian-Chinese cooperation is currently the “main stabilizing factor” on the international stage. Moscow and Beijing “have solid evidence of practical cooperation,” he said.

“We have worked hard for the current China-Russia relationship, and both sides should develop it,” Xi Jinping told Putin during the opening session of the meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. Xi announced cooperation with the Russian leader for “development and renewal of the two countries” and “cooperation for justice in the world (…)”. He emphasized that China will always be a good partner for Russia.

Vladimir Putin and Xi JinpingGetty Images

According to a Reuters report, Putin and others were to attend the informal meeting with President Xi. Russia’s new defense minister, Andrei Belousov, and head of Russian diplomacy, Sergei Lavrov. During the meeting, the leaders will discuss the issue of Ukraine and economic cooperation. Lavrov said, “Russia and China play an important role in balancing world affairs, and President Vladimir Putin’s visit to China this week will reinforce this trend.”

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“Expression of Unity”

Putin’s visit to China is a “show of solidarity between allies,” according to the AP. Countries ruled by autocratic leaders established the relationship 75 years ago. According to the AP agency, it was intended to confirm their commitment to a “borderless” relationship that ended shortly before Russia’s attack on Ukraine in February 2022.

Since then, Moscow has become economically dependent on China as Western sanctions cut off access to significant parts of the international trading system.

Main photo source: Getty Images

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