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Von der Leyen after meeting Xi: 'More effort needed' to curtail Chinese dual-use goods deliveries to Russia

by Martin Fornusek May 6, 2024 7:27 PM 2 min read
French President Emmanuel Macron (CL), Chinese President Xi Jinping (C), and President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen (CR) leave the Élysee Palace at the end of trilateral talks on May 06, 2024 in Paris, France. (Kiran Ridley/Getty Images)
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French President Emmanuel Macron, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, and Chinese President Xi Jinping held a meeting in Paris on May 6 to discuss Russia's ongoing war against Ukraine, trade issues, and the Middle East conflicts.

Xi arrived in France on May 5 as part of his European tour, marking his first visit to the EU in five years.

The Chinese president's visit comes at a strenuous time, as Beijing and the European countries are increasingly at odds over China's support for Russia during the full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

"We agreed that Europe and China have a shared interest in peace and security. We count on China to use all its influence on Russia to end Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine," von der Leyen said after the meeting.

"President Xi has played an important role in de-escalating Russia's irresponsible nuclear threats," she said, voicing a belief that the Chinese president will continue to do so "against the backdrop of ongoing nuclear threats by Russia."

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"We've also discussed China's commitment not to provide any lethal equipment to Russia. More effort is needed to curtail the delivery of dual-use goods to Russia that find their way to the battlefield."

The U.S. warned its allies in April that China is increasing its support for Russia through geospatial intelligence, missile propellants, and microelectronics.

Beijing has maintained close ties with Moscow during the war, tightening economic cooperation and disrupting Western attempts at isolating Russia.

Bloomberg reported on April 29 that Macron hoped to use the meeting to sway Xi toward influencing Russia to end the war. Speaking at the start of the meeting, the French president said that "the future of our continent will very clearly also depend on our ability to develop balanced relations with China."

Xi commented that "the world today has entered a new period of turbulence and change" and that "as two important forces in the world, China and Europe should... continuously make new contributions to world peace and development."

After concluding his visit to France on May 7, the Chinese president is scheduled to travel to Serbia and Hungary.

White House does not currently see China open to Ukraine’s peace formula
“That is why, for our part, we will continue to be concerned about Zelensky having everything he needs,” U.S. national security spokesperson John Kirby said.
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