China’s top leader, Xi Jinping, has cast himself as a global statesman, helping Saudi Arabia and Iran broker a deal to restore diplomatic ties while extolling the virtues of “Chinese solutions and wisdom” in solving the world’s biggest security challenges.
Now, Xi is putting himself at the center of Russia’s war with Ukraine, working to portray himself as a mediator who could cool down the protracted fight.
The Chinese leader is expected to meet in person next week with President Vladimir Putin of Russia, and a call with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine could follow. China has already proposed a peace settlement, although it does not address important details such as whether Russian troops would withdraw. In announcing Xi’s visit to Russia, a Chinese official Friday said it was “for the sake of peace.”
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