Russian leader Vladimir Putin has confirmed that Chinese communist leader Xi Jinping will visit Moscow in the coming months.
Putin said that the Kremlin looked forward to welcoming the general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) during a Feb. 22 meeting in Moscow with China’s highest-ranking diplomat, Wang Yi.
“We await a visit of the president of the People’s Republic of China to Russia, we have agreed on this,” Putin said during the meeting.
“Everything is progressing, developing. We are reaching new frontiers.”
Xi’s visit to Russia will be the Chinese leader’s first since 2019, though he and Putin have met in person since then.
The leaders met in Beijing in February of last year, where they agreed to a “no limits” partnership ahead of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine,
The pair met again during a security conference in Uzbekistan last September, where they vowed to promote a new, multipolar world order against the United States and the liberal international order.
That so-called multipolar order was among the talking points taken up by Wang during his meeting with Putin this week, and may signal the types of discussion Xi and Putin will have later.
“Together we support multi-polarity and democratization in international relations,” Wang told Putin.
Relatedly, the Russian foreign ministry said it welcomed China taking a more active role in efforts to resolve the conflict in Ukraine but said that officials had not discussed a “peace plan” that the CCP is reportedly working on.
Putin’s acknowledgment of Xi’s visit is the first official recognition of an event that has been rumored for months, and comes at a time when the international community is increasingly frustrated with the behavior of both the Kremlin and the CCP.
U.S. officials said earlier in the day that the nation would impose consequences on China should it expand its support of Russia to include lethal aid for Russia’s attempted conquest of Ukraine.
Similarly, U.S. President Joe Biden delivered a vigorous speech to NATO leaders earlier in the day, vowing that the United States would defend NATO territory, citing the alliance’s collective defense provision.
“We will defend literally every inch of NATO,” Biden said.
Reuters contributed to this report.