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FILE PHOTO: Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping walk during a meeting at the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia March 21, 2023.

Sputnik/Grigory Sysoyev/Kremlin via REUTERS

Putin visits his pal in Beijing

Russian President Vladimir Putin will be in Beijing on Thursday for talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping, in a rare overseas trip to publicly underline strong relations. It’s Putin’s first journey since he was inaugurated for his fifth term as president and parallels Xi’s visit to Russia last year after he ascended to his unprecedented third term.
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China's President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan disembark at Orly Airport, south of Paris, on May 5, 2024.


Xi goes on (short) European tour

This week marks President Xi Jinping’s first trip to Europe in five years. The Chinese leader will only visit France, Serbia, and Hungary – three countries where he’s likely to find the friendliest ears – and meet with EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen to discuss trade tensions and China’s support for Russia in its war with Ukraine.

Xi, who landed in Paris on Sunday, will also have a tete-a-tete with Emanuel Macron for the second time in as many years. You’ll remember that the French president raised continental eyebrows last year with a state visit to Beijing, where he declared that Europe should not be drawn into a standoff between China and the US over Taiwan. Macron’s independent foreign policy approach left a positive impression on Beijing.

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Putin needs Xi to win the war in Ukraine
Russia & China's asymmetrical relationships | GZERO World with Ian Bremmer

Putin needs Xi to win the war in Ukraine

David Sanger, Pulitzer prize-winning New York Times journalist and author of "New Cold Wars," discusses the evolving relationship between China and Russia, highlighting its asymmetry and significance in today's geopolitical landscape. He points out how much the tables have turned. During the Cold War of the 20th Century, the Soviet Union was the dominant power when it came to its relationship with China. Decades later, it's clear that China holds the upper hand. "China holds more cards than the Russians do," Sanger tells Ian Bremmer. Not only that, Russia's Vladimir Putin needs China's Xi Jinping by his side in order to prevail in his war with Ukraine. "He [Putin] needs that Chinese technology desperately... He does not have a choice except to deal with the Chinese on Chinese terms right now."

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Are we on the brink of a new cold war?
Are We on the Brink of a New Cold War? | GZERO World with Ian Bremmer

Are we on the brink of a new cold war?

“We are back in a period of superpower competition that will probably go on for decades. And that, if we're lucky, remains a cold war.” David Sanger, a Pulitzer prize-winning national security correspondent for The New York Times, joins Ian Bremmer on a new episode of GZERO World to offer a clear-eyed take on America’s adversaries. He’s out with a new book called "New Cold Wars: China's Rise, Russia's Invasion, and America's Struggle to Defend the West." The takeaway: we’re entering a new and increasingly unstable era of geopolitics where the US, China, and Russia will be vying for power and influence like never before. China's rise as a world leader and economic powerhouse, along with Russia's nuclear saber-rattling and increasing military cooperation, poses an unprecedented challenge to US dominance.

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The next era of global superpower competition: a conversation with the New York Times' David Sanger

Listen: In 2019, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin met at a summit and described their “friendship without limits.” But how close is that friendship, really? Should the US be worried about their growing military and economic cooperation? On the GZERO World Podcast, Ian Bremmer sits down with Pulitzer prize-winning national security correspondent for The New York Times David Sanger to talk about China, Russia, the US, and the 21st-century struggle for global dominance. Sanger’s newest book, “New Cold Wars: China’s Rise, Russia’s Invasion, and America’s Struggle to Defend the West,” looks at the new and increasingly unstable era of geopolitics where the US, China, and Russia are vying for power and influence like never before. Bremmer and Sanger discuss the US intelligence failures that led to the current geopolitical reality, what the US needs to do to combat the growing cooperation between our two biggest adversaries, and why semiconductor factories are more important to national security than aircraft carriers.

Subscribe to the GZERO World Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, or your preferred podcast platform, to receive new episodes as soon as they're published.

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Maxim Shipenkov/Pool via Reuters/File Photo

Putin-Xi “friendship” threatens Arctic

A new report quoted in the Globe and Mail suggests how Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping’s “friendship without limits” is progressing: Russia is giving very generously in exchange for China buying its oil.

The report by Strider Technologies says China is gaining a major foothold in the Arctic as Russia shifts its defense priorities to the war in Ukraine. Since Putin’s invasion, 234 Chinese-owned companies have registered to operate in the Russian-controlled Arctic, Strider said, an 87% increase on the two years prior. Besides resource exploitation and investment aimed at developing Russia’s Northern Sea shipping route, the two have been deepening security ties in the form of joint exercises in the Bering Sea.

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FILE PHOTO: Donald Trump dancing during the campaign rally for the Republican primary for the 2024 American presidential election. Manchester (NH), USA, January 20, 2024.

David Himbert / Hans Lucas via Reuters Connect

For China, Russia, and Israel, patience is a virtue in 2024

In January, Taiwan elected pro-independence candidate William Lai and, despite warnings, China’s response has been restrained, possibly influenced by Beijing’s belief that the leading US presidential candidate may treat Taiwan like a “discarded chess piece.”

That’s what Chinese Taiwan Affairs Office spokesperson Chen Binhua said would happen if Donald Trump won the US election in November after the former president refused to say whether he would defend Taiwan. His comments shook US ally Japan strongly enough that senior Kishida administration officials are reportedly contacting Trump’s camp to warn against cutting any kind of deal with China.

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William Lai (Lai Ching-Te), the candidate of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), has just been elected President of the Republic of Taiwan, succeeding outgoing President Tsai Ing-Wen. They celebrate the victory on stage at their party headquarters, with his running mate Hsiao Bi-Khim.

Jimmy Beunardeau / Hans Lucas via Reuters

Lai won in Taiwan, but Xi isn’t losing his cool

Taiwan may have elected pro-independence candidate William Lai as its next president, but the result wasn’t the worst news Beijing expected.While Lai secured a decisive win with a seven percentage point lead over his next nearest rival, his party did not fare as well. Dissatisfaction with rising house prices, stagnant wages, and shrinking job opportunities lost the party favor with young voters. Lai’s Democratic Progressive Party, or DPP, failed to get a majority of seats in the legislature. Final results gave the Kuomintang 52 seats, the DPP 51, the Taiwan People’s Party 8, and independents 2.

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