Photo: Sputnik

If Xi Jinping approves the shipment of lethal weapons to Russia for use in the war against Ukraine, it will not only threaten international security and prosperity, but also threaten Beijing’s own interests.

The Washington Post article says so.

As the publication notes, so far China has “wisely kept its distance” from Russia, verbally acknowledging the partnership, but more importantly adhering to Western sanctions. Despite Russia’s call for arms, China has still sent non-lethal aid. At the same time, China took advantage of the international isolation of the Russian Federation by buying up cheap oil.

Xi Jinping has not condemned Russian aggression against Ukraine, but he has played a helpful role in warning Putin about the consequences of using nuclear weapons.

If Beijing abandons its policy of “pro-Russian neutrality,” it will intensify its growing hostility toward the United States and turn it into not only a rival but also a dangerous adversary in Europe’s biggest conflict since World War II. Whatever China wants to achieve by sending weapons to Russia will only cause more bloodshed in Ukraine.

The publication points out that arming Russia would rightfully make China a “bad international”. It would also anger India, Brazil and other developing countries that have tried to remain neutral.

Furthermore, the decision to provide military aid to Russia would damage China’s trade relations around the world, which would likely trigger a cascading series of Western sanctions that would compound Beijing’s already dire economic woes.

As WP writes, China’s long-term interests depend much more on the West than on Russia. The US and NATO countries combined receive more than a quarter of China’s exports. While Russia ranked 15th on China’s export destination list in 2021.

Among the possible reasons why Xi Jinping might take a risk and arm Russia, the publication cites dissatisfaction with the US policy of “containment” of China: Beijing could decide on a strategic withdrawal from globalization and interaction with the West. This could bring China’s attack on Taiwan closer and accelerate a direct military confrontation with the United States.

Another possible explanation is that China may find it profitable to continue the war in Ukraine, as it drains US and European resources.

It will be recalled that US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken warned the Chinese authorities of the consequences of providing material aid to Russia for the continuation of the war against Ukraine.

The head of Ukrainian intelligence, Kyrylo Budanov, does not believe that China will agree to transfer weapons to Russia for the war against Ukraine.

According to media reports, the European Union will consider the transfer of arms from China to Russia as a red line.

“Word and Deed” studied the rhetoric of Chinese officials regarding Russia’s war against Ukraine.

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