​Chinese lecture West : Russia’s ‘real concerns’ over Ukraine

Western nations should heed Russia’s legitimate security concerns over the volatile situation in Ukraine, a top Chinese diplomat has said in a rare public statement on the crisis that has damaged relations between Russia and the West.

Qu Xing, China’s ambassador to Belgium, said the Ukrainian crisis came about due to the ongoing “game”– a metaphor similar to that used by US geopolitical strategist Zbigniew Brzezinski, who referred to it as the “grand chessboard” – between Russia and the West, which has not abated despite, or because of, the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Arguing that outside interference by various powers inflamed the Ukrainian situation, Xing said Moscow would naturally feel threatened unless Western powers engaged in a more constructive approach.

Xing advised Western powers to “abandon the zero-sum mentality” in their efforts to deal with Moscow and the Ukraine crisis and “take the real security concerns of Russia into consideration,” Reuters reported, quoting state news agency Xinhua.

China in the past has urged all involved parties to sit down and negotiate for peace.

The Chinese ambassador, whose Brussels office is in the same city as NATO’s headquarters, then offered some insight as to what motivates the United States on the international stage, and what could lead to its possible decline.

“The United States is unwilling to see its presence in any part of the world being weakened, but the fact is its resources are limited, and it will be to some extent hard work to sustain its influence in external affairs,” he was quoted as saying.

From Russia Today –

Russia to increase ‘patrols’ over Gulf of Mexico

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu’s announcement comes along with a spike in Russian flights over the Black, Baltic and North Seas and Atlantic.
The move highlights growing tensions between the West and Russia over Ukraine, where NATO says Russian tanks are streaming in.
Just Tuesday, Obama and Putin sat together in China for Asia-Pacific economic meeting that was pleasant in front of cameras but icy behind them.
On the table in addition to Ukraine were the issues of Russia’s involvement with warn-torn Syria and its renewed plans to build nuclear reactors in Iran.

Russia’s long-range bombers will range from the Arctic Ocean to the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico on regular patrol missions, the military said Wednesday, a show of muscle reflecting tensions with the West over Ukraine.

A statement from Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu’s statement comes as NATO has reported a spike in Russian military flights over the Black, Baltic and North seas as well as the Atlantic Ocean.

It reflects Moscow’s increasingly tough posture amid tensions with the West over Ukraine and its role in the conflict in Syria.

Shoigu said Russian long-range bombers will conduct flights along Russian borders and over the Arctic Ocean. He added that ‘in the current situation we have to maintain military presence in the western Atlantic and eastern Pacific, as well as the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico.’….

The bomber patrol flights have resumed under Putin’s rule and have become increasingly frequent in recent years.

On Monday, the European Leadership Network issued a report that found a sharp rise in Russian-NATO military encounters since the Kremlin’s annexation of Crimea, including violations of national airspace, narrowly avoided midair collisions, close encounters at sea, harassment of reconnaissance planes, close overflights over warships, and Russian mock bombing raid missions.

Three of the nearly 40 incidents, the think tank said, carried a ‘high probability’ of causing casualties or triggering a direct military confrontation: a narrowly avoided collision between a civilian airliner and a Russian surveillance plane, the abduction of an Estonian intelligence officer, and a large-scale Swedish hunt for a suspected Russian submarine that yielded no result.

In September, the report said, Russian strategic bombers in the Labrador Sea off Canada practiced cruise missile strikes on the U.S. Earlier this year, in May,

the report said, Russian military aircraft approached within 50 miles (80 kilometers) of the California coast, the closest such Russian military flight reported since the end of the Cold War….

By AP Reporter and Josh Gardner – MailOnline.com –

Ukraine accuses Russia of sending in tanks, escalating crisis

By Natalia Zinets & Vladimir Soldatkin – Reuters –

Ukraine’s military accused Russia on Friday of sending a column of 32 tanks and truckloads of troops into the country’s east to support pro-Russian separatists fighting government forces.

Thursday’s cross-border incursion, if confirmed, is a significant escalation of a conflict that has killed more than 4,000 people since the separatists rose up in mid-April and would call into question Russia’s commitment to a two-month-old ceasefire deal.

The truce has looked particularly fragile this week, with each side accusing the other of violations after separatist elections last Sunday condemned as illegitimate by the West.

“Supplies of military equipment and enemy fighters from the Russian Federation are continuing,” military spokesman Andriy Lysenko told a briefing in Kiev, describing a column that included 16 big artillery guns and 30 trucks carrying troops and ammunition as well as 32 tanks.

He said five Ukrainian soldiers had been killed in the past 24 hours although Kiev has denied rebel charges of launching a new military offensive.

Russian President Vladimir Putin summoned security chiefs on Thursday to discuss the deteriorating situation but announced no new moves afterwards.

Although Russia blames the crisis on Kiev and the West, NATO says it has overwhelming evidence that Russia has aided the rebels militarily in the conflict and it has left Moscow’s relations with the West at their lowest ebb since the Cold War.

 
Continue Reading