Putin in China to cement key alliance Putin in China to cement key
CHINA: Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in China on
Tuesday for a three-day visit aimed at bolstering a crucial alliance
that has seen the giant neighbours block further action against Syria.
Both energy and foreign policy cooperation are high on the agenda,
with Putin also participating in a regional summit Wednesday and
Thursday where he will separately meet the presidents of Iran and
Putin's China trip, his first to Asia since starting an historic
third term last month, comes after failed attempts by EU leaders to sway
him on Syria -- a Soviet-era ally Moscow still supplies with arms.
Beijing and Moscow have walked in lockstep on Syria to growing anger
from Arab and Western nations, with EU President Herman Van Rompuy
telling Putin in Russia on Monday that world powers needed to “find
common messages on which we agree”.
Known for confronting the West repeatedly during his 2000-2008
presidency, Putin pointedly skirted the issue of Syria during Monday's
briefing with EU leaders, noting only that “our positions do not
coincide on every issue”.
Putin has been keen to play up the importance of Russia's at-times
uneasy ties with China, which have grown stronger in the past year as
both used their veto power on the UN Security Council to block action