Russian President Vladimir Putin will discuss with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, two pressing global conflicts – the Israel-Palestine dispute and the protracted war in Ukraine, which has endured for over 600 days, the Kremlin said on Tuesday.
Earlier, Putin arrived in China to attend a Belt and Road Initiative conference and hold a slate of bilateral meetings in Beijing. He will meet Xi on Wednesday.
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said the conflict in the Middle East has the potential to escalate that could bring about “unimaginable consequences for the entire region.” He underlined the prominence of the issue on the agendas of leaders worldwide.
Before departing for China, President Putin held a telephone exchange with Palestinian National Authority (PNA) President Mahmoud Abbas, as well as leaders from Egypt, Iran, and Syria. He also spoke with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Peskov said that Putin and Xi would have substantial matters to discuss, particularly since the situation “is evolving rapidly, and tension remains.”
In previous statements, Putin has underscored Israel’s right to self-defense against Hamas attacks while stressing that the human repercussions of a ground operation in Gaza would be unacceptable. He has called for a humanitarian ceasefire.
Putin has advocated the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian dispute through the establishment of two states coexist in peace and security.
Peskov clarified that Putin has yet to unveil a peace initiative. “To formulate a peace initiative, it requires meticulous preparation, discussions with all stakeholders, comprehension of their stances, and an understanding of prevalent dynamics.”
Beyond the Middle East conflict, Putin and Xi will engage in a comprehensive discussion of other pressing international matters, including Ukraine.
The Russian presidential spokesperson emphasized that Putin typically provides an assessment of the prevailing situation regarding the advancement of the “special military operation,” as Russia refers to its war in Ukraine.
The two leaders will also deliberate on bilateral and economic relations, particularly the prospects associated with the Fuerza Siberia 2 gas pipeline to transport greater volumes of Russian gas to China via Mongolia.
Russia aims to supply China with at least 98 billion cubic meters of gas and 100 million tons of liquefied natural gas by the year 2030.
Putin arrived in China with a large delegation of senior officials, including two deputy prime ministers, as well as the heads of foreign affairs, economic development, transportation, finance and others.
The governor of the Central Bank, the head of Russian Railways, the chairman of the largest Russian bank, Sberbank, as well as of VTB bank, energy giants Rosneft and Gazprom, nuclear company Rosatom and other executives are also part of the delegation.
China aims through the Belt and Road Forum to win the Global South with multibillion-dollar investment projects that have also received criticism for the risk of debt they entail.
With the initiative, which was presented in Kazakhstan 10 years ago, Beijing seeks to strengthen its international influence and boost trade ties between Asia, Europe and Africa through the construction of ports, railways and airports. EFE