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06 June 2024

Professor Astrid Nordin comments on Zelensky's criticism of China

Earlier this month, Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, criticised China over its relationship with Russia. During the Shangri-La Dialogue Forum in Singapore in June, he accused Beijing of helping Russia to undermine a forthcoming peace summit.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy

Lau Chair of Chinese International Relations, Professor Astrid Nordin, commented on the recent event in an article for CNBC news, saying: 

China “would prefer to cast itself as the role of benevolent peace maker, and wants the Ukrainian leadership to affirm that role, that relationship, and that story.” 

“The risk to Ukraine of refusing to play the role of recipient of Chinese benevolence is that Chinese leaders might change the script to one where China emphasises a role for itself as a staunch bulwark against Western hegemony, hand-in-hand with Putin”.

“Zelenskyy has little to gain from positioning himself in a way that encourages Chinese leaders to emphasise the latter story over the former,” and China could easily signal a change of heart toward Kyiv with the “harsh treatment of Ukraine and entrenched support for Putin.”

Read the full article.

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Astrid Nordin

Lau Chair of Chinese International Relations