G7 urges China to pressure Russia to end war in Ukraine

The Group of Seven joined on Saturday to urge China to put pressure on its strategic partner Russia to end its war in Ukraine.

In a joint statement, the leaders of the world’s richest democracies stressed that they do not want to harm Beijing and that they seek “constructive and stable relations” with the country, “recognizing the importance of speaking candidly and expressing our concerns directly to China”.

“We call on China to put pressure on Russia to stop its military aggression and withdraw its troops from Ukraine immediately, completely and unconditionally,” the statement said. “We encourage China to support a comprehensive, just and lasting peace based on territorial integrity and the principles and purposes of the United Nations Charter,” including in direct talks with Kiev.

Cooperation with China is necessary given its global role and the size of its economy, the G7 said in its call to work together on challenges such as climate change, biodiversity, debt and the financial needs of the most vulnerable countries, concerns global health and economic stability.

deep concern

The leaders also expressed “deep concern” over the situation in the East and South China Seas, where Beijing has expanded its military presence and is threatening to use force to seize control of the autonomous island of Taiwan. They called for a “peaceful solution” to Chinese claims to the island, which have been stalled since the Communist Party seized power on the mainland in 1949.

According to the statement, there is no “legal basis for China’s extensive maritime claims in the South China Sea, and we oppose Chinese militarization activities in the region.”

“A growing China that abides by international rules would be in the global interest,” said the G7 note, alluding to accusations that Beijing would be undermining “the rules-based international order.”

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The Group of Seven also expressed concern about the human rights situation in China, including in Tibet, Hong Kong and the western region of Xinjiang, where accusations of forced labor are recurrent.

China, world power

The G7 also used the statement to counter accusations that it is trying to prevent China’s rise as a world power.

“Our political approaches are not designed to harm China nor do we intend to slow down its economic progress and development,” he said, noting the consensus that efforts to diversify supply chains and ensure stable access to minerals and other resources strategies do not seek to reduce the commercial relationship with the second largest economy in the world.

“We are not disengaging or withdrawing,” the G7 said. “At the same time, we recognize that economic resilience requires limiting risk and diversifying. We will take steps, individually and collectively, to invest in our own economic vitality. We will reduce excessive dependencies in our critical supply chains.”

Members of the group also pledged to stand against various types of “economic coercion” and stated that they “will counter malicious practices, such as the illegitimate transfer of technology or disclosure of data,” and will avoid “unduly limiting trade and investment”.

Chinese officials have reacted to various G7 statements on economic coercion and other issues by accusing the United States and other members of the group of hypocrisy.

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