European leaders want to meet with China ASAP

Spanish leader Pedro Sanchez to visit China next week/Shutterstock Images

In the words of one Politico journalist, “Xi Jinping’s blooming bromance with Vladimir Putin is freaking EU leaders out. Now they’re booking flights to Beijing.”

European Union leaders at a summit in Brussels raised the alarm about China’s rather showy support for warmonger Vladimir Putin this week, warning that they could not stand by while Beijing and Moscow solidify an alliance that risks tipping the globe deeper into turmoil.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and Emmanuel Macron, the French president,  both announced on Thursday they will fly to Beijing for separate talks next week and on April 4, respectively.

“The French president underlined the need to make the utmost efforts to ensure that China does not support Russia and its capacity to move ahead with the war,” an EU official said.

Spain’s Sánchez, confirmed he would be meeting Xi in China next week. Spanish officials said China’s position paper on Ukraine would be discussed. Spain will take over the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU from Sweden later in 2023.

Speaking to media during the summit in Brussels, Latvian leader Krišjānis Kariņš described the Xi-Putin meeting in Moscow as “eye-opening for Europe.”

He said the meeting showed that “China is not taking the role of a broker [but is] moving overtly on the side of Russia and this is a difficulty for all of us.”

Kariņš said that Beijing is in the driver´s seat in its relationship with Russia, but it remains unknown where they want to, together, drive this relationship.

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