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Russia’s foreign minister began a visit to China on Monday by seeking to enlist Beijing in an effort with Moscow to reduce their dependence on the US dollar and push back against American sanctions.
Sergei Lavrov arrived in China for a two-day visit during which he will meet his counterpart Wang Yi — talks that come amid increasingly strained relations between their governments and the US.
“The risks of sanctions should be reduced by strengthening the self-reliance of the science and technology industry, [and] promoting settlement by local and other international currencies that can replace the US dollar so as to gradually move away from the Western-controlled international payment system,” Lavrov said, according to the South China Morning Post, which cited Chinese state media.
The first high-level talks between China and the US in Alaska last week turned highly contentious when Chinese government officials lectured the US delegation led by Secretary of State Antony Blinken about racism and America imposing its ideals on the rest of the world.
And a war of words erupted between President Biden and Russian leader Vladimir Putin after Biden called him a “killer.”
Russia responded by demanding Biden apologize, and Putin challenged him to an online debate.
The US has slapped sanctions on Russia for meddling in the 2020 election and for the poisoning of dissident Alexei Navalny. America has also imposed penalties on Chinese technology company Huawei and placed visa restrictions on Communist Party officials.
Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Beijing and Moscow “always stood shoulder to shoulder.”
“China and Russia are already very close partners, and both sides have been maintaining close contact at various levels,” Hua told reporters on Monday.
“The development of Russian-Chinese relations does not target any particular country, and our relationship is open and honest – unlike other countries, which have their own ulterior motives and even conspiracies,” she added.
With Post wires
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