Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an agreement to expand their economic ties during a bilateral meeting in Moscow on Tuesday.
Xi is in Moscow for a multiday series of meetings with his Russian counterpart, aimed at demonstrating the two countries’ new “friendship without limits.” Xi and Putin emphasized the importance of jointly safeguarding their countries’ energy security.
Putin touted plans for a gas pipeline from Siberia to China ahead of the meeting, saying the agreement was all-but finalized.
“We were just discussing a good project, the new Power of Siberia 2 pipeline via Mongolia. Practically all the parameters of that agreement have been finalized,” Putin told Xi at the beginning of the meeting, according to the Financial Times. Beijing has grown increasingly friendly with Moscow over the past year as Putin’s invasion of Ukraine left the country largely ostracized on the world stage.
Xi’s visit comes just days after the International Criminal Court issued a warrant for Putin’s arrest for war crimes committed in Ukraine. Nevertheless, the pair called each other “dear friend” when they first shook hands on Monday.
Putin alleged during Monday’s meeting that the Western world is conspiring to stifle Russia and China by “persistently working to split the common Eurasian space into a network of ‘exclusive clubs’ and military blocs that would serve to contain our countries’ development.”
“This won’t work,” he said, according to The Wall Street Journal.