Biden To Speak With China's Xi Friday On Ukraine

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by Tyler Durden
Thursday, Mar 17, 2022 - 12:47 PM

President Joe Biden is expected to hold a phone call with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping Friday about what the White House described as "managing the competition between our two countries as well as Russia's war against Ukraine and other issues of mutual concern."

It comes days after accusations flew from Washington charging Beijing and Moscow of seeking backdoor cooperation on the Ukraine invasion, particularly on sanctions evasion. Further, several US media reports based on the words of "senior admin officials" said that Russia formally requested that China provide weaponry for the Kremlin's Ukraine operations. 

Via FT

Press Secretary Jen Psaki described of the scheduled Xi call, "This is part of our ongoing efforts to maintain open lines of communication between the United States and the PRC."

Earlier in the week Biden's national security adviser Jake Sullivan engaged in a some 7-hour long meeting in Rome with his Chinese counterpart, wherein in Sullivan said Beijing was warned of "consequences" should it help Russia in any way financially or militarily regarding the Ukraine war.

Sullivan relayed the threat of "potential implications and consequences" for Beijing and expressed Washington's "deep concerns". China in the aftermath rejected the charge, starting with its embassy in Washington D.C. saying it had never heard of such an interaction between China and Russia, especially on the charge of the weapons shipments request.

China on Thursday has "affirmed" its "friendship" with Ukraine, vowing to never attack, according to Bloomberg:

Ambassador Fan Xianrong had told Lviv Governor Maksym Kozytskyi during a meeting Monday that China was a “friendly country for the Ukrainian people” and would “never attack Ukraine,” according to a summary posted on the Lviv government’s website. He went on to praise the strength and unity demonstrated by the Ukrainian people, in an apparent reference to their efforts to resist Russia’s ongoing invasion. 

Meanwhile, an unusual development is being reported...

And since the weekend and Monday accusations, Chinese officials and state media have gone on the attack...

The last time Biden and Xi spoke was during their three-and-a-half hour virtual summit last November, which reportedly resulted in no breakthroughs, according to statements from both sides.