ua en ru

President of China to visit France for first time since pandemic - Politico

President of China to visit France for first time since pandemic - Politico China's president, Xi Jinping (photo: Getty Images)

China's president, Xi Jinping, will visit Paris in early May, where he will meet with President Emmanuel Macron. This will be the Chinese leader's first trip to Europe since the pandemic, according to Politico.

Politico notes that Xi's visit will coincide with the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Paris and Beijing. Thus, China seeks to restore its strained relations with Europe through Xi Jinping's no-limit partnership with Russian President Vladimir Putin, despite the war in Ukraine.

At the same time, Politico writes, the mood in France is likely to be different from the celebrations marking the 50th anniversary of bilateral relations between the countries.

"It will be less festive and more studious given the current economic and geopolitical stakes," Politico quoted an anonymous source as saying.

Washington and European capitals will closely monitor the visit, which has been planned for months.

Officials told Politico recently that China is trying to persuade Europe to let Russia sit at the table for future peace talks, potentially in Switzerland - or Beijing will boycott such meetings.

The Politico's sources noted that this message was reinforced during the European tour of Chinese special envoy Li Hui earlier this month, where he discussed the future of Ukraine. At that time, the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs officially stated that Li Hui had promised to support the timely convening of a peaceful conference with equal participation of all parties.

Politico also reminded that the meeting between Xi and Macron in Paris will take place a year after the French president visited Beijing and Guangzhou.

It is expected that Macron will visit China again this year, but there is no official confirmation from the Elysee Palace yet.

China proposes an end to the war

Last year, Chinese President Xi Jinping presented his vision for the diplomatic resolution of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and appointed a special representative for these issues - former Chinese Ambassador to Russia Li Hui.

After his appointment, the special representative traveled to Russia, Ukraine, and the EU to discuss the Chinese initiative. Kyiv did not appreciate Beijing's diplomatic efforts, as Ukraine already has its own peace formula. After that, China largely forgot about the issue of Russia's war against Ukraine.

In March, China's envoy will visit Ukraine, Poland, Germany, France, and Russia. His tour began on March 2.

The Chinese diplomat has already visited Ukraine and also traveled to Brussels and Poland. Li Hui discussed the war in Ukraine, calling it the Ukrainian crisis.

China may boycott peaceful negotiations on the settlement of the war in Ukraine if Europe does not allow Russia to participate in them.