Xi Jinping says Putin’s re-election ‘fully reflects’ support of Russian people

China has strengthened its ties with Russia over the past few years, even as Western criticism of the war in Ukraine intensified

Updated - March 20, 2024 05:20 pm IST

Published - March 18, 2024 02:49 pm IST - BEIJING

Russian President Vladimir Putin gestures while speaking on a visit to his campaign headquarters after a presidential election in Moscow, Russia on March 18, 2024.

Russian President Vladimir Putin gestures while speaking on a visit to his campaign headquarters after a presidential election in Moscow, Russia on March 18, 2024. | Photo Credit: AP

China congratulated Vladimir Putin on March 18 on winning Russia’s presidential election and said the strategic relationship between the two countries will continue to strengthen.

Mr. Putin won a record post-Soviet landslide in Russia’s election on Sunday, cementing his already tight grip on power in a victory he said showed Moscow had been right to stand up to the West and send its troops into Ukraine.

Also Read | China’s Xi says strong Russia ties a ‘strategic choice’

China President Xi Jinping sent a message to congratulate Mr. Putin on his re-election as president of Russia, Chinese state media reported.

“We firmly believe that under the strategic guidance of President Xi Jinping and President Putin, China-Russia relations will continue to move forward,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lin Jian told reporters when asked about the vote.

“China and Russia are each other’s largest neighbours and comprehensive strategic partners in the new era.”

China has strengthened its ties with Russia over the past few years, even as Western criticism of the war in Ukraine intensified.

The two countries declared a “no limits” partnership in February 2022 when Mr. Putin visited Beijing just days before he sent tens of thousands of troops into Ukraine, triggering the deadliest land war in Europe since World War Two.

It has been reported that China and Russia are preparing “several meetings” between Mr. Xi and Mr. Putin this year.

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Russia, and Mr. Lin said the two heads of state would continue to maintain close exchanges.

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