Russian President Vladimir Putin will travel to Beijing in October for talks with China’s Xi Jinping, the Kremlin’s chief’s first known trip abroad since the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant against him.
Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of Russia’s Security Council, said that the West’s attempt to contain both Russia and China should deepen cooperation between the two powers.
“In October, we look forward to thorough bilateral talks between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing,” Patrushev was quoted by the Interfax news agency as saying at a meeting in Moscow with China’s top diplomat, Wang Yi.
Putin will attend the third Belt and Road Forum after an invitation by Xi during a high-profile visit to Moscow in March.
Just days before Xi’s Moscow visit, the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant against Putin on grounds of illegally deporting hundreds of children from Ukraine. Moscow denies the allegations.
The Kremlin said that the warrant was evidence of the West’s hostility to Russia, which opened a criminal case against the ICC prosecutor and judges who issued the warrant.
Patrushev, a close Putin ally, said Russia wanted to develop ties with China.
“Russia is committed to the progressive development and strengthening of Russian-Chinese relations,” Patrushev said, adding that the two powers had a “comprehensive partnership and strategic cooperation”.