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Borrell calls Chinese arms sales to Russia 'red line'


The US warns of possible arms deliveries from China to Russia. Now the EU is also reacting: According to chief diplomat Borrell, the People's Republic would thus cross a red line.

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Chief diplomat of the EU: The Spaniard Josep Borrell


Should China deliver arms to Russia, "a red line" would be crossed, said EU chief diplomat Josep Borrell on the fringes of the foreign ministers' meeting in Brussels.

He also made this clear to the senior Chinese foreign politician Wang Yi.

However, the latter had assured him that China had “no intention of doing this”.

Sweden, which holds the presidency of the EU Council of Ministers this six-month period, threatened China with "consequences" if it were to supply arms to Russia.

Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Billstrom said in Brussels that his message to Beijing was clear: "No weapons to Russia, under any circumstances and from any country." The EU is on the side of the United States.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken warned on Sunday that China was considering "deadly support" for Russia in the Ukraine war.

This includes "everything from ammunition to the weapons themselves," Blinken told CBS.

Blinken had previously met China's foreign politician Wang at the Munich Security Conference.

Asselborn refers to Iran sanctions

Luxembourg Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn told Deutschlandfunk that Chinese arms deliveries to Russia would be a “dramatic turn” in the almost year-long war of aggression against Ukraine.

He said yes to the question of whether the EU would then impose sanctions on China.

Asselborn referred to the EU punitive measures already imposed on Iran for supplying combat drones to Russia.

"If China were to supply weapons, something similar could very quickly follow," emphasized Asselborn.

China criticizes the US

China has sharply criticized the US for the allegations, but has not denied the plans.

Washington is spreading "false information," Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said Monday about Blinken's statements.

China will not accept "any hints from the United States on Sino-Russian relations," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang in Beijing.

It is "the United States and not China that constantly sends weapons onto the battlefield."

Washington must "seriously" think about its own actions and do more to "defuse the situation, promote peace and dialogue" and stop "blaming and spreading misinformation."

China is Russia's most important remaining partner, which has been largely isolated internationally since the Russian invasion of Ukraine around a year ago.

Tensions between the People's Republic and the USA had increased significantly in recent years.

Among other things, it deals with the conflict over Taiwan, the situation in Hong Kong, human rights and trade issues.

Most recently, the days-long flight of a suspected Chinese spy balloon over several US nuclear weapons bases led to a scandal between Washington and Beijing.

US Secretary of State Blinken then canceled a planned trip to China, which should have been the first visit to China by a US chief diplomat in years.

In the past few months, however, there had also been signs of relaxation.

US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping met last November on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Indonesia.

Blinken then met Wang Yi in Munich at the weekend.


Source: spiegel

All news articles on 2023-02-20

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