China blasts US claims Russia asked for military assistance in Ukraine conflict




Chinese President Xi Jinping, center left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin, center right, enter a hall for talks in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, June 5, 2019. Amid the soaring tensions over Ukraine, President Vladimir Putin is heading to Beijing on a trip intended to help strengthen Russia's ties with China and coordinate their policies amid Western pressure. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, Pool, File)

Cape Town: Following reports that Moscow had contacted Beijing for military assistance, including procurement of drones and military equipment for its campaign in Ukraine, Chinese officials denied the claims and said it was ‘disinformation’ from the US.

According to Indo-Asian News Service, the Chinese embassy spokesperson in Washington, Liu Pengyu, said he was unaware of any talks between China willing to assist Russia in the request for military aid.

Pengyu said China had and would continue to continue to provide humanitarian assistance to Ukraine and that the priority needed to be in preventing the “tense situation from escalating or even getting out of control”.

“China calls for exercising utmost restraint and preventing a massive humanitarian crisis,” said Pengyu.

Chinese leader Xi Jinping finds himself in a tough spot amid the conflict as he holds strong ties with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Xi Jinping said no goodwill could come from the sanctions against Russia. The US and its European allies introduced sanctions by targeting Russian banks and high-rank Russian officials.

On Monday, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian urged Washington to explain its military-biological activities abroad, including on the territory of Ukraine.

Sputnik News reported that Zhao told reporters that the international community is concerned about the operation of dozens of biological labs in Ukraine and called on the US to prove the sincerity of its activities.

“Why does not it open these biological laboratories for independent research by international experts?” Zhao told reporters, commenting on the reports on the US-funded bio-labs in Ukraine.