During their meeting on Sunday in Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese Defence Minister Li Shangfu praised the two countries’ “no limits” partnership and their military cooperation.
Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping had a meeting last month in Moscow.
Since Russia’s deployment of tens of thousands of troops into Ukraine in February 2022, China and Russia have taken steps to further solidify their economic, political, and military connections.
Putin and Li were seen shaking hands in the meeting footage before Putin sat down at a table. Sergei Shoigu, Russia’s minister of defence, was also present.
“In addition to frequently exchanging relevant information, cooperating in the field of military-technical cooperation, and conducting joint exercises, we are actively working through our military departments,” said Putin.
He continued by saying that the exercises, which included ground, naval, and aviation forces, had taken place both in Europe and the Far East.
Putin stated that “Undoubtedly, this is another crucial area that strengthens the extremely trusting, strategic nature of our relations.”
According to a senior official in Kiev on Friday, Ukrainian forces are discovering an increasing amount of components from China in Russian weaponry used in Ukraine. China has consistently denied supplying Russia military hardware.
According to NATO and the US, there are currently no indications that Beijing is providing Moscow with armaments.
Since his appointment last month, Li has only made this one trip abroad.
“In recent times, cooperation between Russia and China in the military and military-technical spheres has been developing very well,” he told Putin, adding that this helped strengthen regional security. The Kremlin interpreted Li’s remarks.
Li’s trip to Moscow was previously confirmed by Beijing, which stated that he would meet with defence officials but made no mention of a meeting with Putin.
Because Li purchased combat aircraft and other equipment from Rosoboronexport, Russia’s primary arms exporter, he has been subject to US penalties since 2018.