Putin-Xi meeting: Russian leader praises China's balance on Ukraine and slams 'unipolar ugliness'

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By Euronews  with AP
A combination photo shows Russian President Vladimir Putin and China's President Xi Jinping during their meeting in Samarkand
A combination photo shows Russian President Vladimir Putin and China's President Xi Jinping during their meeting in Samarkand   -   Copyright  Credit: AFP

Russian President Vladimir Putin has denounced what he calls Western attempts to create a "unipolar world" as he met his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, in Samarkand.

Putin praised Beijing's "balanced position" on the war in Ukraine - China has pointedly refused to criticise Russia’s action in Ukraine and criticised Western sanctions against Moscow. 

Russia, in turn, has strongly backed China amid tensions with the US that followed a recent visit to Taiwan by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The Kremlin had already hailed the importance of the meeting between the two leaders in advance, which was held at a Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Uzbekistan. 

"Attempts to create a unipolar world have recently taken an absolutely ugly form and are totally unacceptable," Putin told Xi. "We very much appreciate the balanced position of our Chinese friends regarding the Ukrainian crisis," he added, in their first meeting since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Chinese President Xi Jinping also assured Putin that China was willing to assume its role as a "great power" alongside Russia.

"China is willing to work with Russia to assume its responsibility as a great power, play a leading role and inject stability and positive energy into a world plagued by chaos," Xi Jinping said in his first meeting with Putin since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

"Attempts to create a unipolar world have recently taken an absolutely ugly form and are totally unacceptable," Putin told Xi. "We very much appreciate the balanced position of our Chinese friends regarding the Ukrainian crisis," he added, in their first meeting since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.