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Blinken: China 'primary contributor' to Russia's military-industrial complex

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk April 19, 2024 4:58 PM 2 min read
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken gives a press conference at the French Foreign Ministry in Paris on April 2, 2024. (Benoit Tessier / POOL / AFP via Getty Images)
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China is the "primary contributor" to Russia's military-industrial complex, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said at a press conference following a meeting of Group of Seven (G7) foreign ministers on April 19.

China officially declares itself a neutral party to Russia's full-scale war in Ukraine, but Washington has continued to sound the alarm on Beijing's support of Moscow's defense-industrial expansion efforts.

Reuters reported earlier in April, citing unnamed U.S. defense officials, that China is aiding Russia's war machine in Ukraine by providing machine tools, weapons technology, and satellite imagery.

Blinken added that China is also supplying Russia with semiconductors and other dual-use technologies that can be used for military purposes.

Blinken and other U.S. officials have previously warned China against providing Russia with lethal military aid and urged Beijing to use its influence over Moscow to help end the war.

"China can't have it both ways. It can't afford that. You want to have positive, friendly relations with countries in Europe, and at the same time, you are fueling the biggest threat to European security since the end of the Cold War," Blinken said at the press conference on April 19.

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock also commented on China's military ties with Russia.

"If China openly pursues an ever closer partnership with Russia, which is waging an illegal war against Ukraine...we cannot accept this," Baerbock said at the press conference.

China has insisted that its alliance with Russia is normal and that it has not supported either Ukraine or Russia with weapons throughout the full-scale war.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning responded to Western criticism in a press conference earlier in April, claiming that the partnership between Beijing and Moscow constituted "normal cooperation."

"China will not accept the accusations and pressuring," Mao said.

Liu Pengyu, a spokesperson at the Chinese Embassy in the U.S., also told Reuters in April that China was not providing weapons to Russia or Ukraine and remained a neutral party.

Scholz says he asked Xi to ‘put pressure on Russia’ to end invasion
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on April 16 that he has asked Chinese President Xi Jinping to “put pressure” on Moscow to end its war in Ukraine, as “China’s word carries weight in Russia.”
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