Xi wishes Putin happy New Year
Chinese President Xi Jinping has sent New Year greetings to his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, Chinese state TV has reported. In his telegram to Xi, the Russian head of state, in turn, expressed confidence that cooperation between Beijing and Moscow will strengthen further in 2023.
According to a Chinese TV report, “PRC Chairman Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin on December 31 exchanged congratulatory telegrams on the occasion of New Year.”
On Friday, the two heads of state spoke via video link, and Putin invited his “dear friend” to visit Moscow in the spring of 2023.
The Russian president also sent messages to a host of other world leaders.
According to the Kremlin website, he congratulated the presidents and prime ministers of all former Soviet republics, except for the Baltic States, Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia.
In Southeast Asia, the General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam, Nguyen Phu Trọng and the President Nguyen Xuan Phuc, received telegrams from Putin.
The Russian president also congratulated India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Droupadi Murmu.
Putin extended his congratulations to several European leaders, including the prime minister of EU member Hungary. In his telegram to Viktor Orban, the Russian head of state said that “despite a complicated international environment,” relations between Moscow and Budapest continue to show positive dynamics.
Addressing Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, Putin expressed his hope that the two countries would keep developing bilateral ties “for the benefit of the fraternal peoples of Russia and Serbia.”
In addition, Putin made a point of congratulating former German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, with whom he has long enjoyed personal friendships.
When asked whether the Russian president would send any messages to incumbent Western leaders, such as US President Joe Biden, French President Emmanuel Macron or German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, the Kremlin spokesperson replied in the negative on Friday.
“We effectively don’t have any contacts with them,” Dmitry Peskov explained, citing “hostile actions” by those leaders with regards to Russia.
Meanwhile, in the Middle East and Western Asia, Putin’s congratulations went to Syrian President Bashar Assad and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The Russian head of state also sent messages to the leaders of Brazil, Bolivia, Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua.