Can Xi help bring peace to Ukraine?

When Chinese President Xi Jinping was leaving his country for Kremlin, he called his three-day visit to Russia that started on March 20, 2023 'a visit for peace'. Both sides discussed bilateral and regional issues including Ukraine. President Xi said, 'China has upheld an objective and impartial position based on the issue's merits and actively promoted peace talks.' And President Vladimir Putin said, 'We are grateful for China's balanced line regarding the events in Ukraine, we welcome China's willingness to play a constructive role in resolving the crisis'.

In binary opposition to that, the West is skeptical that China has any role to play on the Ukraine war. Western media is debating that China is roleplaying America by pretending that it has the same influential leverage the US has been enjoying for decades.

Another notion circulating in the West is: if China somehow makes possible any kind of ceasefire between Russia and Ukraine, will that even be acceptable? I believe capping a conflict must be the top priority for everybody because wars and conflicts bring nothing but destruction, and Ukraine has been paying too heavy a price since 2014, with the previous year being horrific.

According to a report released on March 13, 2023 by OHCHR, 21,965 civilian casualties - including 8,231 killed and 13,734 injured - occurred in Ukraine from 24 February 2022 to 12 March 2023. If we talk about overall conflicts where the West was a partner, the number is touching over a million. A report by the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs of Brown University claims that over 929,000 people have died in the post-9/11 wars either due to direct war violence or consequences of war in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and Yemen and the impact of the Afghan war on neighbouring Pakistan. The Brown University Project 'Cost of War' indicates abovementioned wars produced 38 million refugees and displaced persons. These figures are enough to understand that any chance to cap conflict in Ukraine must be taken as an opportunity whether it comes from China or from Saudi Arabia which has also offered to play a role over the Ukraine conflict.

China's 12-point plan to end the Ukraine conflict is not received well by the West. The NATO secretary general...

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