Putin hails China’s willingness to help resolve Ukraine conflict

President Vladimir Putin on Sunday welcomed China’s willingness to play a “constructive role” in ending the conflict in Ukraine, saying Sino-Russian relations were “at the highest point”.

His Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping is heading towards Russia on Monday in hopes of making a breakthrough on Ukraine as Beijing seeks to position itself as a peacemaker.

The quality of ties between Moscow and Beijing is ‘higher than Cold War-era political and military unions’, Putin said in an article written for a Chinese newspaper and published by the Kremlin on the eve of the visit of Xi.

Putin said he had “high expectations” from his talks with the Chinese leader.

“We have no doubt that they will give a powerful new impetus to the whole bilateral cooperation,” he added.

Putin hailed “China’s willingness to play a constructive role in resolving” the year-long conflict in Ukraine.

He said he was grateful to Beijing for its “balanced” stance on events in Ukraine and its understanding of the backstory of the conflict and the “real reasons” behind it.

“Russia is open to a settlement of the Ukrainian crisis by politico-diplomatic means,” Putin assured in the article.

However, he insisted on Kyiv’s recognition of “new geopolitical realities”, namely Russia’s annexation of four Ukrainian regions last year, as well as Crimea in 2014.

“Unfortunately, the ultimatums to Russia show that (their authors) are far from these realities and have no interest in seeking a solution,” he added.

Announcing the trip on Friday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said Beijing would “play a constructive role in promoting peace talks.”

Freshly reappointed for a third term in power, Xi is pushing for a bigger role for China on the world stage, and has played a crucial role in mediating a surprise rapprochement between Middle Eastern rivals Iran and the United States. Saudi Arabia this month.

Russia news

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