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China calls for Peace talks between Russia and Ukraine

Volodymyr Zelenkyy, President of Ukraine, says he plans on meeting Xi Jinping to discuss his proposal on ending the war in Ukraine. President Zelenksyy said the proposal signaled that China seeks to resolve the issue peacefully. On the other hand, the western countries disdained this claim considering the closing ties between Russia and China.


The United Nations expressed cautious optimism over China’s proposal, specifically the part of the document that states the two countries should avoid using nuclear weapons. Moreover, the 12-point document released by China doesn’t state that Russia should withdraw its troops from Ukraine and it condemns the usage of 'unilateral sanction' which could be seen as an indirect hit at Ukraine’s western allies. The 12-point document that was released by China calls for a political settlement of the crisis. In terms of the Chinese peace proposal, President Zelenskyy said “I want to believe that China will not supply weapons to Russia.” 


On the other hand, Russia’s foreign ministry, in a statement, praised China's proposal by saying “We share Beijing’s view”. Furthermore, Russia said that it appreciated Beijing’s efforts to settle the conflict but insisted any solution should recognize Kremlin control over four Ukrainian regions


“We highly value the sincere desire of our Chinese friends to contribute to the settlement of the conflict in Ukraine through peaceful means,” the foreign ministry said, but added, any settlement must recognize “the new territorial realities.”


Earlier in the week, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that Beijing was considering supplying weapons and ammunition to Russia. This claim was denied by Beijing. 


In reference to China’s plan, US President Joe Biden told ABC News on Friday: “[Russian President Vladimir] Putin's applauding it, so how could it be any good? I've seen nothing in the plan that would indicate that there is something that would be beneficial to anyone other than Russia," he stated.


BBC’s World Affair Editor, John Simpson commented “China appears to be siding with Russia, though it would like to find a way of rescuing President Putin by arranging some kind of face-saving peace deal.” 


Following China's proposal, Wang Yi, China's top diplomat, visited President Putin and the Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov in Russia on Wednesday. After the visit, Xinhua, China's state-run news agency said that Beijing is willing to deepen political trust and strengthen strategic coordination with Moscow. 


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