The recent phone call between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has sparked interest in global political circles. The conversation marked the first official communication between the two leaders since Russia launched a military operation in Ukraine more than a year ago. Xi Jinping emphasized the need for dialogue and negotiation to resolve the ongoing conflict, urging all sides to remain calm and restrained. He promised to dispatch a special envoy to Ukraine and other countries to facilitate in-depth communication regarding the issue.
Zelensky responded positively to the phone call, calling it “long and meaningful.” He further stated that the conversation and the appointment of an ambassador to China would provide a “powerful impetus” for bilateral relations between the two countries.
This move could signify China’s growing interest in expanding its influence in the region. This communication with China may also signal a shift towards diversifying Ukraine’s alliances beyond its traditional Western partners.
China’s role in the Ukraine conflict has been a matter of global interest, given its strategic partnership with Russia. Unlike many Western nations, China has refrained from condemning Russia and imposing sanctions on Moscow. Instead, it has expressed willingness to mediate a peaceful resolution between Moscow and Kiev. In February, Beijing unveiled a 12-point roadmap for peace between the two countries.
This phone call comes shortly after Xi Jinping’s visit to Moscow, where he met with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The leaders vowed to work together to increase trade and cooperation, with Xi Jinping stating that their ties have “acquired critical importance for the global landscape and the future of humanity.”
French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to China this month, where he urged Xi to reason with Moscow, suggests that Ukraine’s crisis is not just a regional matter but a matter of global concern. While the Chinese government criticized Russia for attacking Ukraine, it also agreed with Moscow that NATO’s expansion near Russia’s western border was one of the core causes of the conflict. As China aims to increase its global influence, its stance on the Ukrainian crisis will have significant implications for the region’s stability and the world order.
In summary, the phone call between Xi Jinping and Zelensky signals China’s growing interest in the Ukraine conflict, and its willingness to play a more significant role in mediating a peaceful resolution between Moscow and Kiev. It is also an indication of China’s expanding global influence, particularly in the region.
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