BREAKING: Personal message from Xi Jinping to Vladimir Putin: our friendship is unbreakable
Russiaâ€™s President Putin has met in the Oval Hall of the Kremlin with Li Zhanshu, Director of the General Office of the Communist Party of China, and chief of staff of Chinese President Xi Jinping.
The meeting was held directly after Li Zhanshu held talks with his Russian counterpart Anton Vaino, who is the head of the Russian Presidentâ€™s Executive Office and who is President Putinâ€™s chief of staff.
I have previously explained who Li Zhanshu is, and why his visit is important, and the likely reason for his visit, which is the ongoing attempt by the Trump administration to cause trouble between China and Russia, and Chinaâ€™s and Russiaâ€™s concern to squelch any mistaken impressions which might be caused by that attempt.
That in turn explains the way the Chinese and the Russians â€“ undoubtedly by pre-arrangement â€“ used Li Zhanshuâ€™s meeting with Putin to publicise a personal message from President Xi Jinping to Putin. Â The Kremlinâ€™s transcript of Li Zhanshuâ€™s words reads as follows
Before myÂ departure, IÂ went especially toÂ see President Xi Jinping andÂ asked him what he wanted toÂ pass onÂ toÂ you. He told me toÂ say that today, Chinese-Russian relations are going through their best period ever inÂ our history.
Today, our relations are deservedly called anÂ example ofÂ relations between great powers, characterised byÂ cooperation andÂ mutual benefit. Today, our relations are very solid, mature, andÂ are distinguished byÂ strategic cooperation andÂ aÂ lasting nature.
He also said that despite theÂ serious changes inÂ theÂ international situation, we will continue toÂ work with you unfailingly adhering toÂ three constants, namely: regardless ofÂ theÂ circumstances, we will not change our policy ofÂ deepening andÂ developing our strategic partnership andÂ cooperation; our policy, based onÂ joint development andÂ prosperity, will not change; andÂ our joint efforts toÂ defend peace andÂ justice andÂ promote cooperation inÂ theÂ world will not change. These were theÂ words ofÂ President Xi Jinping.
(bold italics added)
The â€œserious changes in the international situationâ€ of course refers to the change of administration in Washington, and the new administrationâ€™s attempt to make trouble between China and Russia.
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President Xi Jinping in his personal message to President Putin went out of his way to say that this attempt could not succeed, and that Chinaâ€™s strategic partnership with Russia â€œwill not changeâ€.
The message is of course primarily intended for the Trump administration. Â The Chinese and the Russians scarcely need to reassure each other about the depth of their relationship, which they are of course far more informed about than anyone else. Â However Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin are anxious that there should be no illusions about it in Washington. Â Alas, given the chaos in Washington, it is doubtful whether anyone there is paying attention.