Putin thanks Xi for ‘balanced’ position on Ukraine

Moscow, Sep 15 (EFE).- Russia’s president Vladimir Putin thanked on Thursday his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping for Beijing’s backing on the Ukraine crisis as the two leaders met for the first time since the Kremlin invaded its smaller neighbor.

“We highly appreciate the balanced position of our Chinese friends in connection with the Ukrainian crisis,” Putin said during his meeting with Xi in the Uzbek city of Samarkand.

“We understand your questions and concerns in this regard. During today’s meeting, of course, we will explain in detail our position on this issue, although we have spoken about this before,” he added.

The Russian leader also lashed out at the United States for its “provocations” over Taiwan.

“We condemn the provocations of the US and its satellites in the Taiwan Strait,” Putin said, stressing that Moscow supports the One-China policy.

Xi, who is on his first trip abroad in over two and a half years due to the coronavirus pandemic, said he was willing to work with the Kremlin to lead a “world in turmoil”.

“In the face of changes in the world, (…) China is willing to work with Russia to play a leading role in demonstrating the responsibility of major powers, and to instil stability and positive energy into a world in turmoil,” the Chinese leader said.

Referring to his Russian counterpart as an “old friend,” Xi said that the leaders have remained in strategic contact even during the coronavirus pandemic.

Putin, meanwhile, slammed the West’s “attempts to create a unipolar world,” saying they have “recently acquired an absolutely ugly form and are completely unacceptable.”

Putin and Xi are scheduled to take part in an official dinner later Thursday on the eve of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit, to which Iran has signed a memorandum of commitment. EFE


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