Moscow: The Chinese ambassador to Moscow has called the United States the “main instigator” of the war in Ukraine and accused Washington of seeking to “crush” Russia.
With repeated NATO defence alliance expansions and assistance for forces working to align Ukraine with the European Union instead of Moscow, Ambassador Zhang Hanhui said, the US has forced Russia into a corner.
“As the initiator and main instigator of the Ukrainian crisis, Washington, while imposing unprecedented comprehensive sanctions on Russia, continues to supply arms and military equipment to Ukraine,” Zhang was quoted as saying in an interview with the Russian state news agency TASS.
“Their ultimate goal is to exhaust and crush Russia with a protracted war and the cudgel of sanctions.”
The ambassador’s argument for the invasion of Ukraine, which has resulted in thousands of fatalities, the destruction of entire cities, and the forced emigration of more than a quarter of the people, was quite similar to one employed by Russia itself.
Zhang claimed in the interview that Sino-Russian relations were now in “the best time in history, marked by the highest level of mutual confidence, the highest degree of contact, and the largest strategic relevance.”
As Russian tanks gathered on the Ukrainian border in February, Russian President Vladimir Putin travelled to Beijing to meet with President Xi Jinping. They came to an agreement that both countries lauded as being superior to any Cold War alliance and a “no limits” collaboration.
Zhang criticised Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the US House of Representatives, for visiting independent Taiwan, which China claims as its own, and claimed that the US was using the same strategies in Taiwan and Ukraine to “revive a Cold War mentality, contain China and Russia, and provoke major power rivalry and confrontation.”
Russian officials refer to the invasion as a “special military operation” and claim that it was required to ensure both their own security and the safety of Russian speakers worldwide.
These, according to Ukraine and the West, are flimsy justifications for an imperial campaign of aggression against a neighbour that earned independence in 1991 when the Moscow-led Soviet Union disintegrated. — Agencies