Top Line

In his first meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping since Russia launched an invasion of Ukraine in February, President Vladimir Putin accepted China had “questions and concerns” about the war – a sign that the two eastern superpowers may not be on the same page, even as China strives to remain neutral.

Key Facts

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Speaking at a summit in Uzbekistan, Putin said Moscow and Beijing play an important role in providing stability in the region and around the world to establish a “fair, democratic and multipolar world order”, and added that Russia’s ongoing war understands China’s concerns about , russian news agency TASS informed of.

According to a readout of the meeting from the Chinese state broadcaster, Xi, however, remained silent on the conflict in Ukraine. CCTVIt said instead that China would work with Russia “on issues concerning their respective core interests.”

China, which declared The “friendship without borders” with Russia, at its last meeting in February before the Russian invasion, has not provided any military aid to Russia since the start of the war, although it has helped Western Europe and the United States in harsh economic impositions. not followed. Sanctions on the Kremlin or providing military aid to Ukraine, either.

The meeting came a week after Russia withdrew from occupied territory in eastern Ukraine, as Ukrainian forces made their first major advance in months in Kharkiv.

main background

According to the United Nations, the meeting comes as Russia's offensive enters its seventh month, killing about 5,600 civilians and injuring about 7,900 as of August 22. report good, Dozens of companies have also exited Russia after Putin's invasion, while the European Union has. economic sanctions And the United States has sent military aid worth more than $15.2 billion, including a $2 billion package announced last week. In retaliation, Putin has threatened to cut energy supplies if the EU imposes price limits on sales of Russian oil and gas. Economists expect this winter to have dire consequences for Europe's energy supply. A report from the United Kingdom's energy regulator Offgame last month estimated that energy prices in the UK could rise by as much as 80% this fall amid rising inflation as oil supplies dry up. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned last week that gas prices could rise this winter as the European Union plans to cut Russian oil by December.

big number

17%. How much more crude did China buy from Russia between April and June compared to the same period last year, Reuters informed of.

Russia admits to retreat as Ukraine makes first big gain in months (Forbes)

Xi and Putin meet and pledge to 'inject stability' into the world (Washington Post)

Putin says Xi has questions and concerns over Ukraine (Reuters)