Envoy Upholds China’s Position on Ukraine Crisis Amid Pressure to Condemn Russia

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang speaks at a media briefing in Beijing (File)China’s trusted relations with Russia and good relations with Ukraine give it the unique position in international efforts for peace talks, Chinese Ambassador to the US Qin Gang reiterated China’s stance on the Ukraine crisis in an interview on a US talk show.Analysts said that such a scenario is an epitome of the US and the West’s pressuring China to condemn Russia, which brings no good in helping ease the Ukraine crisis. They called on the US and the West to play a positive role in promoting peace talks between Ukraine and Russia, instead of transferring weapons to fan the flames.

In a nine-minute interview with Margaret Brennan on CBS’ “Face the Nation” on Monday, Qin was interrupted by Brennan more than 20 times with the latter continuing to ask whether China will support Russia over Ukraine, and why has China not condemned Russia.

Despite Brennan’s constant interruptions, Qin repeated that “China has good relations with Russia, has good relations with Ukraine. And China keeps close communications with the US and with Europe. These enable China to reach out to all parties concerned in the crisis. So China’s unique role can help with the peaceful settlement of the crisis.”

In responding to why China cannot condemn Russia's actions as "an invasion," Qin said that "Let's not be naïve… condemnation doesn't solve the problem… we will continue to promote peace talks and urge for an immediate ceasefire," Qian said.

Some criticized the CBS host for being “rude” to interrupt Qin from fully uttering his opinions. Analysts noted that such a scenario shows how eager the US is to pressure China into condemning Russia, but China has not and will not jump into the trap. Unlike China, which has made efforts to promote peace talks, the US – the initiator of the crisis – has done nothing positive to promote a ceasefire but fans the flames.

It is true that the US is the obstacle of Russia-Ukraine negotiations. As the conflict continues and talks remain inconclusive, the situation will actually benefit the US, for it would be able to suppress Russia on one hand and strengthen its control over Europe on the other, Cui Heng, an assistant research fellow from the Center for Russian Studies of East China Normal University, told the Global Times on Monday.

The interests of the US on the military conflict is different from that of Ukraine, although it seems that the US has been backing Ukraine by sending weapons, Cui Hongjian, director of the Department of European Studies at the China Institute of International Studies, told the Global Times. “In other words, preserving the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine is not the strategic aim of the US.”

Biden’s plan for Europe is obvious, that he will urge Europe to unify its stance and align with the US on Russia, Cui Heng said, “because now we see a division in the EU’s stances on Russia, especially on the issue of oil and gas. Countries like Hungary, Poland, Germany and France that still have a need for Russia’s oil and gas maintain a reserved attitude toward Russia, while the US and Canada already banned imports of Russian energy.”

Observers believe that having reached a point like this, the US’ fanning flames will only do harm to the peaceful settlement between Russia and Ukraine. Instead, there should be a mediator, pushing forward relevant sides to approach each other’s terms, and that role can only be played by China.

“For one thing, China has maintained good relations with both countries, and for another thing, China’s independent foreign policy in the conflicts without siding with any party has allowed China to have a unique position,” Cui Heng said.*This article was originally published by The Global Times.

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