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AFP
January 3, 2021

China sees ‘no limit’ in developing strategic ties with Russia

World

AFP
January 3, 2021

BEIJING: China has expressed strong determination to continue strategic ties with Russia in the year ahead, with the Chinese foreign minister saying Beijing sees “no limit” as to how far the cooperation between the two sides can reach.

“The year 2021 is a year of special importance for China-Russia relations, as both countries will enter a new development stage,” Wang Yi said in an interview with Xinhua news agency and other state media outlets on Saturday.

“In developing China-Russia strategic cooperation, we see no limit, no forbidden zone and no ceiling to how far this cooperation can go,” he added.

The top Chinese diplomat hailed “good neighbourly relations” between Russia and China, and said the development of bilateral ties has been highlighted by the leaders of the two countries on multiple occasions over the past year.

“Together, China and Russia will continue to be the example of good neighbourly and friendly relations between major countries, add impetus to global recovery, and underpin global strategic stability.”

Elsewhere in the interview, the Chinese foreign minister expressed optimism about the restoration of bilateral ties between the United States and China under the upcoming administration, saying Beijing’s relationship with Washington has reached a “new crossroads” and could get back on the right track.

The Chinese side hopes the next US administration will return to a sensible approach, resume dialogue with China, restore normalcy to the bilateral relations and restart cooperation, Wang said.

The top Chinese diplomat called on Washington to “respect the social system and development path” chosen by Beijing, stressing that if the US “learns lessons,” the conflicts between the two sides could be resolved.

“We believe that as long as the United States can draw lessons from the past and work with China in the same direction, the two countries are capable of resolving differences through dialogue and expanding converging interests by cooperation,” he noted.

Underlining that China’s policy toward Washington is consistent and stable, Wang said, “We are ready to develop with the United States a relationship based on coordination, cooperation and stability.”

He also responded to American politicians that had accused China of covering up the outbreak of Covid-19 during its early stages, saying Beijing had done its utmost to combat the virus’s spread by “sounding the alarm” for the rest of the world.

Under US President Donald Trump, relations between China and the US, the world’s two largest economies, have sunk to the lowest point in decades.

The US and China are currently at loggerheads over a host of issues, including trade, a new security law introduced in Hong Kong, the origins and handling of the Covid-19 disease, Taiwan, and the disputed South China Sea.

The fate of restoring normalcy to US-China ties remains murky as US President-elect Joe Biden has made clear that he will not remove existing tariffs set by his predecessor against China for now.