Chinese officials announced on Friday (June 25) that Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet with the Russian president. The meeting is seen as an extremely important effort by Xi to consolidate the quasi-alliance between China and Russia in the face of strong pressure from the U.S.-led West.
The news was announced by Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying. “President Xi Jinping will hold a video meeting with President Vladimir Putin of the Russian Federation on June 28,” Hua Chunying said in a diplomatic schedule on the Foreign Ministry’s official website.
U.S.-China relations changed significantly during the last U.S. President Donald Trump’s presidency, as the two countries shifted from strategic partners to strategic competitors. This change has impacted the relationship in many ways. Human rights issues such as Xinjiang, Tibet and Hong Kong, Taiwan, the South China Sea, the traceability of the New Crown virus, and the overall competition between the two countries have combined to lead to a direct confrontation between the U.S. and China, the world’s two largest economies, on multiple fronts, including political, military and technological issues.
Observers point out that in this confrontation, the U.S., together with its Western allies, has formed a strong and broad alliance against China. By contrast, China has suffered unprecedented isolation. To escape this situation, China has been most concerned with consolidating its relations with Iran and Russia, in addition to strengthening relations with its traditional allies North Korea and Pakistan.
However, Biden has made a number of efforts to improve U.S. relations with Iran and Russia since coming to power, and has achieved tangible results, which has put Beijing under tremendous pressure.
On June 16, President Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin achieved their first meeting in Geneva, and the result of the meeting was surprising. The U.S. and Russia are at odds, with the two sides bickering over how to treat Russian opposition leader Navalny; giving each other an inch over Ukraine’s membership in NATO; and blaming each other for hacking cyberattacks. In April, the U.S. expelled 10 Russian diplomats and imposed new sanctions on six Russian technology companies. The move led to both sides withdrawing their own ambassadors stationed on the other side, and relations between the two countries hit a low point not seen in years.
Before the talks, international opinion was generally pessimistic, even suggesting that Biden’s talks with Putin would not end happily. But after the talks, both Biden and Putin made positive comments about the meeting.
Putin described the talks as “constructive” and called Biden a “constructive person. Biden described the summit as “positive,” “positive,” and “I think there is a real prospect of a significant improvement in relations between our two countries without us giving up on a single thing based on principles and values. .”
Biden and Putin also agreed during their talks that the two ambassadors would soon return to their jobs and resume normal relations between the two countries.
Beijing is very uneasy about the loosening of U.S.-Russian relations and fears that Russia, the only country that could provide significant support to China in a U.S.-China confrontation, will slip to the U.S. side. Some people familiar with the trilateral relationship between the U.S., China and Russia believe that there is a possibility of resolving the conflict between the U.S. and Russia, but the conflict between the U.S. and China has now entered the level of strategic confrontation, and unless the Chinese Communist Party adopts major political reforms, there is no turning back from this confrontation. Therefore, analysts believe that this Xi-Pu meeting is far more important for Beijing than for Moscow.