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Factbox-Top takeaways from Putin's trip to China
Factbox-Top takeaways from Putin's trip to China
World
Factbox-Top takeaways from Putin's trip to China
by DZRH News17 May 2024
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping shake hands at the gala event celebrating 75th anniversary of China-Russia relations in Beijing, China May 16, 2024. Sputnik/Sergei Guneev/Pool via REUTERS

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin made a state visit to China on Thursday where he was greeted by China's Xi Jinping.

What are the main takeaways from the visit?

* Xi and Putin declare a "new era" partnership:

In a joint statement, 7,000 words long in Russian, Xi and Putin pledged a "new era" of partnership between the two most powerful rivals of the U.S., which they cast as an aggressive Cold War hegemon that was sowing chaos across the world.

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They proclaimed opposition to the United States on a host of security issues and a shared view on everything from Taiwan and Ukraine to North Korea and cooperation on new peaceful nuclear technologies and finance.

There was little detail on what actual deals they agreed, though the meat of the meeting was expected to be hashed out informally over tea.

Putin took his new defence minister, Andrei Belousov, and a large delegation with him.

* Putin's China trip signals priorities:

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By picking China for his first foreign trip since being sworn in this month for another six-year term, Putin is sending a message to the world about his priorities and the strength of his personal ties with Xi.

Xi greeted Putin on a red carpet outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, where they were hailed by marching People's Liberation Army soldiers, a 21-gun salute on Tiananmen Square and children waving the flags of China and Russia.

* Russia and China detailed a host of grievances against the United States:

- Russia and China have serious concerns at "U.S. attempts to violate the strategic balance"

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- Examples of this include: U.S. global missile defence involving the deployment of parts of it in regions around the world and in space.

- Developing high-precision non-nuclear weapons for potential “decapitation” strikes

- "Extended nuclear deterrence" with allies including Australia.

- Plans to deploy ground-based intermediate-range and shorter-range missiles (INF) in the Asia-Pacific and European regions, including their transfer to its allies.

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- "The parties strongly condemn these extremely destabilizing steps, which pose a direct threat to the security of Russia and China."

- "The parties oppose the hegemonic attempts of the United States to change the balance of power in Northeast Asia by building up military power and creating military blocs and coalitions."

* Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller was not on the trip:

Gazprom, which holds about 16% of global gas reserves and employs 492,200 people, was once one of Russia's most powerful corporate empires - so powerful it was known as "a state within the state".

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But the loss of a massive chunk of the European gas market due to Russia's war in Ukraine has hit it hard.

"Alexei Miller held talks with the Iranian leadership on the dates of Putin's visit to China," Gazprom said, referring to a working visit by Miller to Iran this week.

It was not immediately clear what Miller was talking to Iran, a major producer of natural gas, about. Miller, 62, is a close ally of Putin who has run Gazprom since 2001.

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(Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge, Editing by William Maclean)

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