20 June 2024,   10:54
Putin arrives in China on mission to deepen partnership with Xi

Russian President Vladimir Putin has arrived in Beijing for talks with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping as he seeks to deepen ties, writes The Guardian.

The visit will also celebrate 75 years since the Soviet Union recognised the People’s Republic of China in 1949. Putin’s motorcade was met by Xi at the Great Hall of the People in Tiananmen Square on Thursday, where a lavish welcoming ceremony included members of the People’s Liberation Army standing at attention and a multi-gun salute. Putin and Xi later sat down for talks.

In televised remarks, Xi noted the two had met more than 40 times, but that the China-Russia relationship had “not come easily” and was “worth cherishing and safeguarding by both sides”: “In our new journey we intend to remain good neighbours, trusted friends and reliable partners, consistently strengthening the relationship between our two nations … defending international equality.”

Putin said he was “happy to be in China among our friends”: “The relationship between Russia and China is not situation driven and not aimed at anyone. Together we stand for principles of equality, fairness and a world order that reflects the multipolar reality”.

Kremlin foreign policy aide Yuri Ushakov said the two leaders would hold informal talks on Thursday evening over tea and that they would touch on the Ukraine war, Asia, energy and trade.