President Xi Jinping and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin were filmed saying warm goodbyes as their two-day meeting ended with China’s leader saying they were driving geopolitical change around the world.
The two leaders called for “responsible dialogue” to resolve the Ukraine crisis, with Xi acknowledging Beijing and Moscow had signed an agreement bringing their ties into a “new era” of cooperation.
Keep readinglist of 4 items
A video of Xi’s departure on Wednesday was filmed with translators speaking for both men.
“Right now there are changes – the likes of which we haven’t seen for 100 years – and we are the ones driving these changes together,” Xi told Putin as he stood at the door of the Kremlin to bid him farewell.
The Russian president responded: “I agree.”
Xi then put out his hand to shake Putin’s and said: “Take care please, dear friend.” Putin responded by holding Xi’s hand with both of his and saying, “Have a safe trip.”
The Chinese leader’s visit to Moscow comes days after the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant for Putin for war crimes allegedly committed in Ukraine, where Russian forces have made little progress in recent months despite suffering heavy losses.
The talks were intended to cement the “no limits” partnership the two leaders announced last February, less than three weeks before Russia invaded Ukraine.
Putin said a Chinese proposal to end the conflict could be used as the basis of a peace settlement, but the West and Kyiv were not yet ready.
The United States has been dismissive of China’s peace plan and said a ceasefire would lock in Russian territorial gains and give Putin’s army more time to regroup.