Russia and China, “like most countries, share the desire for equal cooperation in the world.” Russian President Vladimir Putin said this, speaking at the opening ceremony of the forum on the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), underway in the Great Hall of the People, in Beijing. The Russian leader then had a bilateral meeting, which lasted an hour and a half, with Chinese President Xi Jinping, who stated: “Our two countries have deepened mutual political trust and maintained close and effective strategic coordination. Our volume of bilateral trade has reached a record level and is approaching the goal of $200 billion.” Xi also asked his Russian counterpart for more joint efforts to “safeguard fairness international” and “justice” (LIVE UPDATES ON THE WAR IN UKRAINE).
Moscow and Beijing “in harmony”
Before the bilateral meeting, the head of the Kremlin had already made it known that Russia is “in tune” with the importance of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and with the plans of China, which seeks cooperation instead of rivalry, and had thanked President Xi Jinping for Beijing-funded development towards the “new world”.
Putin’s trip to China
Vladimir Putin landed in China on October 17. This is his second trip abroad, following a visit to Kyrgyzstan last week, since the International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant for him. The trip, in the Kremlin’s plans, serves to strengthen bilateral ties and a “boundless” personal friendship, despite an invasion of Ukraine that has thrown Russia into international isolation.