Macron Urges Xi to Talk Sense Into Russia

Russia expresses no hope for peace negotiations
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 6, 2023 6:35 PM CDT
Macron Urges Xi to Talk Sense Into Russia
Chinese President Xi Jinping, left, and France's President Emmanuel Macron review troops during a welcome ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Thursday.   (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

On a state visit to Beijing, French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday pressured Chinese President Xi Jinping to help persuade Russia to end its invasion of Ukraine. "I know I can count on you to bring Russia to its senses, and bring everyone back to the negotiating table," Macron said, the BBC reports. In his remarks at the Great Hall of the People, Xi was noncommittal, repeating that all nations involved have "reasonable security concerns," per Politico. "China is willing to jointly appeal with France to the international community to remain rational and calm," Xi said. Russia was unmoved, answering that it sees "no prospects for a peaceful settlement" to the fighting.

Macron also expressed concern about the possibility of China sending Russia weapons that could be used against Ukraine, a French diplomat said, but didn't seem to make much headway. But there was another angle to Macron's visit: trade. He asked European Commission leader Ursula von der Leyen and a delegation that included business, art, and museum representatives to join his talks with Chinese officials. In addition to the political talk, Macron and Xi held a ceremony in which government and business leaders signed deals including the purchase of 160 Airbus aircraft by China. Afterward, per Politico, Macron made the diplomatic error of talking twice as long as his host, who sighed heavily and appeared impatient. (More Emmanuel Macron stories.)

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