The Russian-Chinese relationship during the war in Ukraine and its implications for Europe’s future
Russia and China seem closer than ever notwithstanding the war in Ukraine. The Chinese leadership has refused to criticize Russia despite mounting pressure to condemn the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine. Just as Russia becomes economically and politically more reliant on its eastern neighbour, China is unwilling to give up years of trust building and forming a united ideological front against NATO and the US. At the same time, China is worried about being affected by the Western sanctions levied against Russia.
Will the partnership between China and Russia evolve into a full-fledged alliance or be weakened after the war? Does the war change the power balance of both great powers with China emerging as the uncontested superior? What role could China play in working towards a ceasefire and peace negotiations to end the war? How should Europe respond to China’s unwillingness to play a mediator role, and instead silently support Russia’s war? Are relations between China and Europe inevitably deteriorating? What will the new “just and democratic world order” which China and Russia are trying to build mean for Europe and transatlantic collective security? What is the significance of the triangle EU-Russia-China for the future security and peace order in Europe?
Dr. Mayssoun Zein Al Din
Executive Director of the Academy of International Affairs NRW
Dr. Una Bērziņa-Čerenkova
Fellow at the Academy of International Affairs NRW, Head of Political Science PhD programme and China Studies Centre at Riga Stradins University, Head of Asia programme at the Latvian Institute of International Affairs
Dr. Sarah Kirchberger
Head of Asia-Pacific Strategy & Security at the Institute for Security Policy at Kiel University (ISPK) and Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council
Prof. Dr. Maximilian Mayer
University of Bonn