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Putin Talks Up China Relations & Trade In Talks With Senior Diplo


MNI (London) - Wires reporting comments from Russian President Vladimir Putin as he hosts top Chinese diplomat Wang Yi in Moscow. Putin says that 'Russian-Chinese relations are developing well...we are reaching new levels of cooperation...we could reach new levels of trade this year...China trade goals may be achieved earlier than planned.'

  • Says that he is 'looking forward to speaking to [Wang] about the international situation', which he describes as 'difficult'. The two sides expressed best wishes to one another's presidents.
  • Putin: 'We await Xi visit to Russia'. Comes after WSJ story on 22 Feb stating that according to its sources, Xi is planning a trip to Russia in the spring (unconfirmed as yet by Chinese officials).
  • Through a translator, Wang states that 'Crisis affects relations, but crises can be opportunities.' Adds that 'Our relations will not succumb to pressure from third countries...we are ready to deepen strategic cooperation with Russia.'
  • Wang's comments come after more conciliatory rhetoric towards Europe in particular during his visit to a number of EU member states prior to his Russia trip. The offer of a China-led peace plan in Ukraine has gained little-to-no traction, with EU capitals sceptical of Beijing's aims.

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