Russia Monitor is a review of the most important events related to Russian internal and external security, as well as its foreign policies.
Date: 15 November 2023 Author: Maciej Tyburski
Russia, China Cement Military Ties
Russian President Vladimir Putin, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, and Zhang Youxia, vice chairman of China’s Central Military Commission and a close associate of Chinese President Xi Jinping, met on Wednesday, November 8, in Moscow for talks.
It was the second meeting between senior Russian and Chinese officials since October 30 when they met in Beijing. At the summit, Chinese and Russian politicians detailed deepening military relations between the two nations and discussed the implementation of bilateral agreements.
Russian President Vladimir Putin emphasized that “Russia and China are not building any military alliances based on Cold War pattern.” He also hailed mutually beneficial cooperation between Moscow and Beijing. Sergei Shoigu said that defense ties between Russia and China are not aimed at third countries. “Unlike certain aggressive Western countries, we are not creating a military bloc,” he said. The Russian defense ministry also criticized NATO and Western nations for destroying the energy market and fueling geopolitical tensions. Vladimir Putin emphasized the growing military cooperation between Russia and China on cutting-edge defense technologies. Both states regularly stage joint air force and navy drills.
General Zhang praised Putin for not caving into pressure from Western sanctions. The United States is concerned by greater alignment between China and Russia. Senior officials in Washington claim that the United States must prepare for possible simultaneous wars with Russia and China. Moscow and Beijing further boosted military cooperation after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. In April, former Chinese Defense Minister Li Shangfu vowed that China was willing to work with Russia to make new contributions to the maintenance of world and regional security and stability. He also emphasized the special nature and strategic importance of Chinese-Russian bilateral ties. Many signs are that as tensions grow between Russia and the West, Russian-Chinese military cooperation will only gain momentum.
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