fredag 4. mars 2022

China denies it asked Russia not to invade Ukraine during Winter Olympics

China has vehemently denied a report that it asked Moscow to delay its invasion of Ukraine until after the Winter Olympics, denouncing it as “fake news”. “This kind of rhetoric is to divert attention and shift blame, which is utterly despicable,” Wang Wenbin, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson, said on Thursday when asked by journalists about the New York Times report published on Wednesday.

Russia launched its attack on Ukraine on 24 February, four days after the end of the Games. On 21 February, Vladimir Putin recognised the independence of separatist-held territories of eastern Ukraine and ordered in troops. Wang again blamed Nato’s eastward expansion and the US administration’s attitude towards Ukraine’s Nato membership for the deterioration of relations with Russia. He said the cause of the current crisis was “a fact known by heart to all”. “Only those who start the problem can end it,” he added.