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Scholz Holds Crucial Meeting with Xi Jinping in China as Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine Takes Center Stage

The German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had a meeting this Tuesday in Beijing with the Chinese president, Xi Jinping with whom he said he would discuss a “just peace” in Ukraine.

“My meeting with President Xi will also focus on how we can contribute more to a just peace in Ukraine“, indicated the German official on the social network X.

Previously, Chinese state media reported that Scholz had met with Xi on the last of his three-day visit to China, China’s main trading partner Germany.

“On the morning of April 16, the president Xi Jinping met with the German chancellor Scholz in the Diaoyutai Guest House in Beijing“, said the television network CCTV.

Scholz’s visit is aimed at strengthening economic relations, although the German leader also announced that he would try to convince Xi to use his influence to contain his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin and help put an end to the Russian war in Ukraine.

China, which projects itself as a neutral actor in the war, has been criticized by Western powers for its refusal to condemn the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Accompanied by a large delegation of ministers and businessmen, Scholz began the visit on Sunday in the southwestern city of Chongqing continued to the economic pole of Shanghai and concludes in Beijing.

The German chancellor highlighted Shanghai where he visited a German plastics company working on green and sustainable technologies and gave a speech at a university, which the economy of Germany “one of the most successful export countries in the world,” is based on being “globally competitive,” while advocating “fair conditions of competition” and not “protectionism.”

Last Friday, the Chinese Foreign Ministry assured that the visit of Scholz It would be “an opportunity to improve understanding and trust”, “deepen practical cooperation” and to “seek common ground despite differences” with Berlin.

The foreign minister is scheduled to meet with the Chinese prime minister on Tuesday, Li Qiang and with the Chinese-German economic committee.

The visit is part of the new strategy of the German government for the Asian giant, which it sees as a “partner, competitor and rival”, and with the aspiration of being able to convey to its authorities the importance of Beijing as a mediator in conflicts such as the Russian war in Ukraine.

The chancellor is traveling to China for the second time, accompanied by the German heads of the Environment, Steffi Lemke, of Transport and Digitalization, Volker Wissing, and of Agriculture, Cem Özdemir, who will return to Germany after reaching Beijing tomorrow on the last leg of his trip. .

(With information from AFP and EFE)

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