Xi Jinping and Putin meet by video Moscow announces 5-year extension of Russia-China friendship treaty

Following a videoconference between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin on June 28, Putin called the extension of the Russia-China friendship treaty “an example of cooperation in the 21st century.”

On Monday, June 28, after a video conference between Putin and Xi, the Kremlin announced that Russia and China have extended the Russia-China friendship treaty signed 20 years ago for another five years. Both sides praised their cooperation as “stabilizing” in the face of “global turmoil.”

France’s Le Figaro newspaper said the Kremlin issued a joint statement after a video conference between Putin and Xi to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Russia-China friendship treaty. The friendship treaty has brought together the two great powers since 2001.

In recent months, China and Russia have issued frequent statements of mutual support. The backdrop of the Russian-Chinese proximity is the strained and increasingly competitive relations between China and the United States.

Since 1996, Beijing and Moscow have been linked by a “strategic partnership” agreement: it was the first partnership agreement signed by China.

Beijing has not yet released information on the video meeting between Xi and Putin, and it is not known if there was anything else that came out of the video meeting.

The general view is that it is now more important than ever for Xi Jinping to bring Putin on board. Conversely, Putin needs to use Beijing to balance Russia’s antagonistic relations with Europe and the United States.

However, two weeks ago, on June 16, Biden and Putin held their first face-to-face meeting in Geneva since 2018. The two leaders agreed to reassign their ambassadors as soon as possible and issued a joint statement after the talks, saying that “even in a period of tension,” the U.S. and Russia proved that the two countries can still make progress on common goals. Putin described the meeting with Biden as “constructive” and “fruitful.