The Biden administration is welcoming a potential meeting between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Chinese communist leader Xi Jinping.
The White House would encourage such an arrangement in order to help Chinese communist leadership better understand the needs of the Ukrainian people, according to National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby.
“We think it would be a very good thing if the two of them talked,” Kirby said during a March 16 press call.
“We think it’s really important for the Chinese to get the Ukrainian perspective and not just Mr. Putin’s.”
Kirby added that the White House had been “encouraging” such a meeting for “quite some time” and said that the administration would be cautious of any attempt by China to broker a peace deal without consulting deeply with Ukraine first.
“We would certainly be concerned by any proposals coming out of [China] that would be one-sided and reflect only the Russian perspective,” Kirby said.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP), which rules China as a single-party state, is attempting to position itself as a mediator, though—to date—the regime has openly supported Russia’s attempted conquest and has not held any substantive talks with Ukrainian officials.
The regime released a 12-point position paper last month which it touted as a “peace plan,” though the document largely parroted Russian propaganda and blamed the war on the United States and NATO.
For his part, Zelenskyy said that the paper’s emphasis on preserving national sovereignty necessarily meant that Russian troops would need to leave Ukraine.
“What they are saying looks like respect for territorial integrity,” Zelenskyy said of the CCP document. “It doesn’t mention the country, but it’s our territorial integrity that has been breached.”
“Territorial integrity implies withdrawal of Russian troops. If it’s not there, that means it is not okay with us.”
Likewise, Kirby said that the CCP’s push for a ceasefire without Russian withdrawal would only serve to help Russia re-arm and train its troops for another offensive later on.
“While [ceasefire] sounds perfectly reasonable and it sounds like a good thing, a ceasefire right now would basically ratify Russia’s conquests,” Kirby said. “It would, in effect, recognize Russia’s gains and all of its attempts to conquer a neighbor’s territory by force.”
“If a peace is going to be enduring, if it’s going to be a just peace, if it’s going to be sustainable, it can’t be one-sided. It has to absolutely include and be informed by Ukrainian perspectives and Ukrainian decisions.”