China and Russia flex muscle at the West [Asiatimes]

Beijing and Moscow will send a clear message to the world at the ongoing Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit. The leaderships of China and Russia have drawn two lines in the sand – an unequivocal “No” to bombing Iran, and another unambiguous “No” to regime change in Syria brought about through a Western bombing campaign.

Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in Beijing yesterday to start his first overseas visit after he was elected as the Russian leader again, which highlights the importance he attaches to his country’s relations with China. And in Beijing, no less, he is scheduled to hold talks with his Iranian counterpart, Mahmud Ahmadinejad. This is indicative of the joint Russian and Chinese geopolitical strategy.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Liu Wenmin spelled out the shared Russian and Chinese viewpoint on the ongoing crisis in Syria:

“On the Syrian issue, China and Russia have stayed in close communication and coordination both in New York, Moscow and Beijing … The position of both sides is clear to all – there should be an immediate end to violence and the political dialogue process should be launched as soon as possible”.

Besides lauding Sino-Russian cooperation on the issue, Liu explicitly made clear the two nations’ consistent objection to the use of force to resolve the Syrian issue: “China and Russia share the same position on these points and both sides oppose external intervention into the Syrian situation and oppose regime change by force.” [1]

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