Jen Psaki, White House Press Secretary, responded to questions Thursday regarding whether the U.S. could expect China to support Russia’s violent invasion of Ukraine. Psaki said that President Biden will be calling Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday to discuss China’s long-term relations with Russia. The Chinese Communist Party is not known for being transparent about its intentions. Biden’s meeting comes after a similar conference between Jake Sullivan, National Security Advisor, and his Chinese counterpart.
“The president, as you may have heard him say, and I’ve also said, is a strong believer in diplomacy and a leader in it. They have a lot of things to talk about, considering that the last time President Xi met virtually with him was in November last year, a few months ago. Tomorrow’s meeting – regarding how we got there – was a follow-up to Jake Sullivan, our national security adviser, who met with his counterpart. During that meeting, they discussed the possibility of the presidents meeting or engaging in near future.
Psaki said that there has been rhetorical support, or the lack of clear rhetoric, and denunciation (or the absence thereof) by China about what Russia is doing. This is a violation of all that China stands for, including the U.N. charter’s basic principles, as well as the principles of respecting sovereignty of nations. It speaks volumes that China does not condemn Russia’s actions in its own right. It speaks volumes, not just in Russia or Ukraine but all around the globe.
Psaki stated that the call will cover a wide range of issues related to China and the U.S. but the main focus of the call will be an assessment by Chinese interests in the Russian invasion Ukraine.
“This call also follows Jake Sullivan’s meeting this week, as it has been made clear that we are deeply concerned about China’s alignment and Russia’s potential consequences,” Psaki concluded.
Officials from the United States claim that Russia sought economic and military aid from China. According to reports, the Kremlin denied making the request. Zhao Lijian, spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry dismissed claims that China had agreed to send Russian aid as “misinformation.” He said that China is “completely objective and impartial on the Ukraine issue” and refused to label the conflict a war.
Zhao also reiterated the Russian line regarding U.S.-backed Ukrainian labs creating biological weapons. This is a claim that Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Ukraine President), the White House and the Pentagon have all unambiguously denied. Zelenskyy addressed Congress Wednesday and showed a video showing the destruction and death of civilians in Ukraine as Russian troops bombarded cities and moved toward Kyiv’s capital. This was just three weeks after the invasion began.
According to Bild, the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was on Thursday a flight to Beijing. However, the plane reportedly turned around mid-air and flew back to Moscow.
Bild reports that the plane turned around as it was passing over Novosibirsk in Siberia. Fox News Digital was unable to verify the report.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia tweeted that Lavrov was holding an announcement conference at 1 p.m. local time on Thursday. This would place Lavrov in Moscow during the time he was allegedly on the air.
According to Bild, it is not clear if China refused to meet a Russian official or whether Russian President Vladimir Putin called him back home to Russia. It is not known where the plane will land.