China can end the Ukraine war with a single phone call to Putin, says NATO member

China can end the Ukraine war with a single phone call to Putin, says NATO member
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Russian leader Vladimir Putin (left) and Chinese leader Xi Jinping (right).
Finland President Alexander Stubb told Bloomberg on Tuesday that Russia’s dependence on China meant that Chinese leader Xi Jinping could end the Ukraine war if he wanted to.

  • China could end Russia’s war on Ukraine if it wanted to, says Finland President Alexander Stubb.
  • “Russia is so dependent on China right now,” Stubb told Bloomberg on Tuesday. 
  • But some analysts believe that China doesn’t really want the war to end.

China could hold the key to ending Russia’s war in Ukraine, Finland President Alexander Stubb said in an interview with Bloomberg on Tuesday.

China’s influence on Russia, Stubb said, stemmed from the latter’s growing reliance on the Asian giant as it grapples with crippling economic sanctions from the West.

“I argue that Russia is so dependent on China right now that one phone call from President Xi Jinping would solve this crisis,” Stubb said of the Chinese leader.”If he were to say, ‘Time to start negotiating peace.’ Russia would be forced to do that.”

“They would have no other choice,” he continued.

Representatives for Russia’s and China’s foreign ministries did not immediately respond to requests for comment from BI sent outside regular business hours.

Stubb, whose country joined the NATO military alliance in April last year, told the outlet that brokering a peaceful resolution to the Ukraine war would be in China’s interest.

“If China is genuinely interested in harmonious relations between nation states, it cannot allow a country like Russia to drive an imperial, at the end of the day, aggressive and colonial war against an independent nation state,” Stubb said.

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“That is the right thing to do. And that would also show leadership from China,” he added.

To be sure, China has called for peace in Ukraine.

In May, Xi hosted Russian leader Vladimir Putin in Beijing. He emphasized China’s desire for an international peace conference involving Russia and Ukraine during the meeting.

Notably, China did not attend a Ukrainian peace conference in Switzerland in June because Russia wasn’t invited.

“China has always insisted that an international peace conference should be endorsed by both Russia and Ukraine, with the equal participation of all parties, and that all peace proposals should be discussed in a fair and equal manner,” Mao Ning, a spokesperson for China’s foreign ministry, said of the Swiss effort on May 31.

However, some analysts believe China doesn’t want the war to stop.

“Despite the fact that China has repeatedly called for a negotiated settlement in Ukraine, America’s continued support for Kyiv — and hence Russia’s inability to secure its gains in short order — is actually in Beijing’s interest,” Chels Michta, a non-resident fellow at the Center for European Policy Analysis, said in his analysis in May.

In his article, Michta argued that an escalation of the war into “European NATO territory would pull the United States deeper in the theater.”

An escalation, Michta argued, would also limit the US’ ability to “respond to a crisis in Asia,” thus allowing China to attain “regional hegemony in the Indo-Pacific.”

“It must therefore be obvious that Ukraine is extremely important to China and that a continuing conflict is very much in its interests,” Michta wrote.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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