On Friday, July 28, 2023, the Chinese government defended its dealings with Russia as “normal economic and trade cooperation.”
This comes after a United States intelligence report stated that Beijing possibly provided equipment used in Ukraine that might have military applications.
The latest report made mention of Russian customs data that showed Chinese state-owned military contractors supplied navigation equipment, fighter jet parts, drones and other goods. However, it did not confirm whether that might trigger U.S. retaliation.
The Biden administration has warned Chinese leader Xi Jinping’s government of unspecified consequences if it supports the Kremlin’s war effort.
The report noted that China is an “increasingly important buttress” for Russia, “probably supplying Moscow with key technology and dual-use equipment used in Ukraine,” referring to equipment that can have both civilian and military applications.
Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Mao Ning, stated in defence of her country that, “China has been carrying out normal economic and trade cooperation with countries around the world, including Russia.”
She averred that Chinese-Russian cooperation “neither targets a third party nor is it subject to interference and coercion by a third party.”
Moreover, Mao said, “We have also consistently opposed unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction that have no basis in international law and have not been authorized by the Security Council.”
China rejects Western trade and financial sanctions on Russia because they weren’t authorized by the U.N. Security Council, where Beijing and Moscow have veto power.
However, China has appeared to avoid directly defying those sanctions.
China Demands U.S To Invite Chief Executive John Lee To APEC Summit
In another development on Friday, The Chinese government demanded the United States to offer an invitation to Hong Kong’s leader for him to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting in San Francisco in November.
China’s statement follows a news report that Chief Executive John Lee, leader of Hongkong, would be barred due to his role in crushing the city’s pro-democracy movement.
According to a report by made by a print media in Washington D.C, Lee would be barred from the economic meeting due to sanctions imposed on him in 2020.
Lee oversaw the crackdown as Hong Kong’s top police official before he was named Chief Executive last year.
The United States and other governments have accused Beijing of violating promises of autonomy and Western-style civil liberties after the former British colony returned to China in 1997.
The Chinese foreign ministry demanded that the U.S lift the “illegal and unreasonable” sanctions on Lee, which it called “bullying that seriously violates the basic norms of international relations.”
The ministry accused the U.S of “undermining the solidarity and cooperation” of the regional forum.
“We demand that the U.S. side immediately correct its wrong move, lift the sanctions against the Chief Executive and other officials of the SAR, fulfil the due responsibility as APEC host, invite Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu to the meeting.”Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, Mao Ning.
Also, Lee’s office in Hong Kong stressed that the United States is “obliged to fulfil its basic responsibilities as a host” and should follow the usual APEC practice by inviting him.
“APEC meetings do not belong to any country or economy,” the office noted in a statement.
Later, Lee disclosed in a press briefing that the city would attend the meeting according to APEC rules and guidelines, saying that he hoped that the host of the meeting could handle it in accordance with such norms.
The Washington based print media cited U.S. officials as saying that Hong Kong could send another representative to APEC.