Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to visit Moscow on Monday for a state visit. This move is widely considered as a show of support for Russian President Vladimir Putin in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. China has remained neutral in the matter and its support for Russia could have a significant impact on the war.
The two nations’ relations have been strengthened over the years. They often collaborate on global issues and stand together in opposition to western nations. For example, they jointly vetoed a United Nations resolution calling for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down in 2012.
China’s foreign policy is geared towards maintaining a position of neutrality while in constant competition with the United States. Additionally, it appears to be veering towards forming closer ties with Russia, largely as a counterbalance. It’s an indication of China’s efforts towards ensuring that it has a positive relationship with leading states, especially those that can offer it essential support.
Russia is struggling to achieve its ambitious goals in the conflict against Ukraine. President Putin’s decision to annex Crimea and support pro-Russian separatists in the country’s Donbass region has led to international isolation and imposed sanctions from powerful Western countries.
Both Russia and China are powerful and influential actors in world affairs, who seek to push their interests on the global stage. While this trip is being referred to as a “peace visit,” it could lead to a more significant relationship between the two countries, potentially reshaping the geopolitical landscape.