Tuesday, September 26, 2023

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China told Russia to hold off the invasion of Ukraine until the end of the winter Olympics- NYT

The New York Times reported earlier today that senior Chinese officials warned senior Russian officials not to invade Ukraine before the end of the Winter Olympics in Beijing, citing Biden administration officials and a European official who referenced a Western intelligence analysis.

The intelligence analysis, according to the New York Times, suggested that senior Chinese officials were aware of Russia’s plans or intentions to attack Ukraine before Russian President Vladimir Putin initiated the operation last week.

China had made the request, according to a source familiar with the situation, but the source declined to disclose further specifics. Due to the sensitivity of the situation, the source declined to be identified.

The intelligence on the meeting between Chinese and Russian officials was gathered by a Western intelligence service, according to the New York Times, and it was deemed trustworthy by those analysing it.

Officials from the United States have corroborated previous Times reports that Washington passed on intelligence on the Russian force buildup around Ukraine to senior Chinese officials ahead of the invasion in the hopes that Beijing would persuade Moscow to withdraw its soldiers.

The evidence was handed around by senior officials in the US and other governments as they pondered when Putin would invade Ukraine, according to the newspaper, but intelligence services had differing interpretations, and it was unclear how broadly the information was shared.

The evidence does not necessarily show that negotiations about an invasion took occurred at the level of Xi and Putin, according to one individual familiar with the intelligence, according to the New York Times.

According to Bonny Lin, a China researcher at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, it’s unclear how much Xi knew about Putin’s plans.

She stated that China had been too tardy in evacuating Ukrainian residents which suggest it was not prepared for the situation

Source : The New York Times

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