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Putin and Xi vow to step up fight to counter US ‘containment’

Putin and Xi vow to step up fight to counter US ‘containment’
They warned of growing nuclear tensions between rival powers.

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Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian leader Vladimir Putin have pledged to strengthen their cooperation against U.S. "containment" of their countries. They accused the U.S. of planning to station missile systems around the world that pose a direct threat to their security. The two leaders also warned of increased strategic risks from spiraling tensions between nuclear powers. Putin's visit to China, his first foreign visit since his inauguration last week, highlights the importance of the relationship with Xi in enabling Moscow to resist unprecedented sanctions from the U.S. and its allies over Russia's invasion of Ukraine. The leaders emphasized the priority of preventing direct military confrontation between nuclear powers and criticized nuclear states that encroach on each other's vital interests. They also discussed deepening cooperation in areas such as energy, military exercises, AI, and space exploration. Putin said he would discuss the situation in Ukraine at informal talks with Xi. The visit comes as the U.S. has stepped up warnings to Chinese banks and exporters about consequences if they help to bolster Russia's military capacity.