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Xi Jinping plans to talk with Zelenskyy after visit to Moscow – media

KYIV. March 13 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Chinese President Xi Jinping plans to speak with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy after a visit to Moscow next week, The Wall Street Journal said.

“Chinese leader Xi Jinping plans to speak with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for the first time since the start of the Ukraine war, likely after he visits Moscow next week to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to people familiar with the matter,” the edition said on Monday.

As expected, the conversation with Zelenskyy will be held virtually. According to The Wall Street Journal, “a direct conversation with Mr. Zelenskyy, if it happens, would mark a significant step in Beijing’s efforts to play peacemaker in Ukraine, which have so far been met with skepticism in Europe.”

As the WSJ said, achieving a breakthrough in Ukraine would be a taller task: both sides in the war believe that too much remains to be played out on the battlefield. “Beijing nevertheless has an active interest in bringing an end to the conflict. The war has put Beijing in a precarious situation, forcing Mr. Xi to balance China’s ‘ no limits’ partnership with Russia with increasing distrust and tension with the United States and its allies,” the newspaper said.

Last month, China declared itself to be a neutral intermediary. In a 12-point document, the Chinese Foreign Ministry called for a political solution to the conflict and an end to unilateral sanctions.