NewsPutin revealed 5-year plan for Ukraine conflict to a skeptical China, sources claim

Putin revealed 5‑year plan for Ukraine conflict to a skeptical China, sources claim

Vladimir Putin and President Xi Jinping
Vladimir Putin and President Xi Jinping
Images source: © Getty Images | Mikhail Svetlov

12:44 PM EST, December 28, 2023

Beijing likely viewed Putin's announcements with doubt, recalling the Russian actions taken in February 2022, just before the Russian invasion of Ukraine. It seems China misjudged the Kremlin's intentions during that period.

The full-blown aggression initiated just a few days after the end of the Winter Olympic Games in Beijing instigated widespread panic in China, as stated on the website.

While Chinese authorities were aware that Russia was accumulating a heavy military presence near the Ukrainian border, they anticipated that the conflict would primarily impact the eastern parts of the country. Nikkei Asia reports that the broad scope of the conflict caught Beijing by surprise.

Beijing Strives to Protect Its Own Interests

As emphasized, because of these events and the growing distrust towards Russia, in 2023, China sought to distance itself somewhat from its previously pro-Kremlin stance and strengthen its interests more determinedly. The Japanese website suggests this understanding explains the initiative taken in May, when Li Hui, the special envoy of the People's Republic of China for Ukraine, began a diplomatic mission to European countries.

Run by the Communist Party, China did not publicly condemn Russia's aggression against Ukraine, hesitated to label it as an invasion, and opposed sanctions imposed on Moscow. Many experts believe that Beijing assists the Kremlin in circumventing the effects of anti-Russian sanctions. This assistance facilitates the re-exporting of Western dual-use goods (items with both civilian and military applications) to Russia.

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