Zelensky invites China’s Xi to visit Ukraine
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky invited Chinese leader Xi Jinping to visit Ukraine during an interview on Tuesday.
“We are ready to see him here,” Zelensky told The Associated Press. “I want to speak with him. I had contact with him before full-scale war. But during all this year, more than one year, I didn’t have.”
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning responded to the request, telling reporters that she had no information on whether an invitation had actually been extended to Xi or if he would even accept an invitation to visit Ukraine, according to AP.
Xi visited Moscow last week to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin, a trip that China labeled as a “new chapter of China-Russia friendship.” President Biden said on Friday that he does not take the growing relationship between the two countries “lightly.”
Days after Xi’s visit to Russia, Putin announced a transfer of nuclear weapons to Belarus just ahead of an anticipated Ukrainian counteroffensive against Russia. This move is likely intended to raise fear in Western allies that could see the move as escalation in the conflict.
Zelensky suggested that Putin’s decision to transfer weapons may instead be to distract from the absence of promises he got from Xi during their meeting.
U.S. officials said last month that China was considering sending lethal aid to help Russia and warned there would be “consequences” if China decided to do so.
“What does it mean? It means that the visit was not good for Russia,” Zelensky told AP.
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