China-Russia ties cornerstone of global strategic stability

By Yang Jin Source: Global Times Published: 2020/7/15 13:03:40

Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

The relationship among major powers in 2020 is of great concern. From a global perspective, because the US launched a trade war with China and has continuously promoted the political stigmatization of China during the global COVID-19 pandemic, China-US relations have deteriorated seriously, which has caused unprecedented shocks to the global system. 

The US has continued to withdraw from international organizations. It has announced to formally withdraw from the World Health Organization (WHO), which is not even a political organization. Its intention is simple: The US will boycott whatever international mechanisms China participates in and plays an influential role. These US moves are having destructive effects on global stability. 

With the international system facing disruption, the relationship between China and Russia is becoming more and more important as a strategic stabilizer. China and Russia have not only been cooperating closely in the fight against coronavirus, but they are also maintaining a high level of collaboration in a series of strategic areas.

China and Russia have carried out strategic coordination to the unreasonable negotiation demands from the US. Beijing and Moscow have refused the US demand for China to participate in US-Russia nuclear disarmament negotiations. This not only ensures the solemnity of the global arms control negotiations, but also protected the strategic interests of both China and Russia.

Regarding the results of World War II, China and Russia supported each other in order to firmly safeguard their achievements from that war. They have resisted the petty actions taken by the US and the West in this regard. This has protected the historical solemnity and dignity of the Chinese and Russian people. 

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, the leaders of China and Russia have maintained close contact. Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin have exchanged views on major international, regional and bilateral issues by telephone several times. This has allowed them to coordinate positions, and fully demonstrate the China-Russia "comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination for a new era."

At a time when some people are expressing convoluted comments and even worries about China-Russia relations, Putin has voiced that Russia regards relations with China as the top foreign policy priority. In kind, the Chinese leader resolutely affirms the importance of China-Russia relations.

Some people are worried that under the context of the deterioration of China-US relations, Russia will be drawn by the US to its side. In the sense Russia would become a pawn for the US to contain China. This concern is superfluous. 

Before the current tensions of China-US relations, Russia was the primary target of containment by the West. Several rounds of so-called sanctions on Russia from the West show clear distrust between them. Russia already knew this. 

The history of human progress is complicated. The relationship between great powers cannot be generalized with simple values and ideologies. Only stable international strategic relations can promote peace, development and progress for all of humanity. 

History has brought lessons for humanity with repeated wars and destructive turbulence. However, some major Western countries have intentionally stirred up the international strategic order recently. They have launched various sanctions against China and Russia. They have politicized the pandemic and weakened the WHO's functions instead of focusing on global solidarity to fight against this most deadly disease. 

The global trend of multipolarization is not over. In the post-pandemic era, although the US waves its sanctioning powers and tries to consolidate a US-centered world order, other forces represented by China and Russia are not weak. Nor are they without energy and power to set countermeasures in motion. 

On the road of safeguarding their respective national interests, China and Russia will surely strengthen comprehensive strategic cooperation to make their relations stronger in order to become the cornerstone and main force of global strategic stability. 

The author is an associate research fellow at the Institute of Russian, Eastern European and Central Asian Studies under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

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