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China fires US warning shot after Joe Biden's phone call as it tightens Russia relations


China has fired a warning shot across the bows of the United States as it continues to forge an alliance with Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

It comes as Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov arrived in Beijing today to display the strength of ties with close diplomatic ally China, amid Moscow’s grinding war against Ukraine.

The visit and warning shot come after US president Joe Biden called his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, to quiz him about China’s relationship with Russia.

However, the call appears to have backfired. China has now warned the US not to “smear or attack the normal relations between China and Russia” – and is pressing ahead with its support for Putin’s regime.

READ MORE: NATO chief warns of ‘dangerous alliance’ of Russia, China, Iran and North Korea

China’s foreign ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning told reporters Monday that “China has an objective and fair position on the Ukraine issue.”

She said: “We have been actively promoting peace talks and political solutions. China is not a creator or party to the Ukraine crisis, and we have not and will not do anything to profit from it.”

China has also said it wasn’t providing Russia with arms or military assistance, although it has maintained robust economic connections with Moscow.

“We have always controlled the export of dual-use items in accordance with the law,” Mao said, referring to industrial items that can be used for both industrial or military purposes, such as drones.

“The relevant country should not smear or attack the normal relations between China and Russia,” Mao said. “The relevant country” was a reference to the U.S., Russia and China’s chief geopolitical rival.

In a phone call with Xi last week, Biden pressed China over its defence relationship with Russia, which is seeking to rebuild its industrial base as it continues its invasion of Ukraine. He called on Beijing to wield its influence over North Korea to rein in the isolated and erratic nuclear power.

Adding to the tension between the two countries, US lawmakers generated new legislation that would ban TikTok, the popular social media application, if its China-based owner ByteDance doesn’t sell its stakes in the platform within six months of the bill’s enactment.

Lawmakers are concerned Chinese authorities could force ByteDance to hand over data on the 170 million Americans who use TikTok. All Chinese firms, especially those in the social media sphere, are obligated to hand over user data to the government.

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