China’sUkraine Envoy appealed to other governments on Friday to “stop sending weapons to battlefields” and to hold peace talks, but did not indicate that his visit to the area had made any progress towards a settlement.
Li Hui made his appeal at a time when Washington and its European Allies were supplying Ukrainian troops with more missiles, tanks, and other weapons.
The government of Chinese leader Xi Jinping says it’s neutral and wants serve as a facilitator, but has supported Moscow on a political level.
Li told reporters that “China believes if we want to end war, save lives, and achieve peace, then it is vital for us to stop sending arms to the battlefield. Otherwise, tensions will spiral upwards.”
Li visited Ukraine and Russia, Poland, France and Germany, as well as the European Union Headquarters, during a 15-28 May trip.
The Chinese initiative was not expected to make much progress by political analysts, but it offers Beijing the opportunity to expand its international diplomatic role.
Beijing unveiled a peace plan for Ukraine in February. However, Ukraine’s allies demanded that President Vladimir Putin withdraw Russian forces first.
China views Moscow as an important diplomatic and military partner to counter the dominance of United States in global affairs. Beijing has refused criticize the invasion, and used its position as one of five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council to deflect diplomatic criticisms against Russia.