Chinese diplomat calls for ceasefire in Ukraine crisis during European tour

Li Hui

26th May 2023 – (Beijing) During a recent visit to Europe, Chinese special representative on Eurasian affairs Li Hui called for an immediate ceasefire in the ongoing Ukraine crisis, while at the same time urging European governments to view China as an economic alternative to the U.S.. However, according to officials, European leaders told Hui that it was impossible to split Europe from America and that they would not withdraw their support from Ukraine.

The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday that Hui carried a clear message: U.S. allies in Europe should assert their autonomy and urge an immediate ceasefire, leaving Russia in possession of the parts of Ukraine that it currently occupies. Hui also stressed the need to move quickly to end the conflict before it spreads.

Hui’s visit to Europe is part of a wider tour of a delegation of Chinese diplomats aimed at resolving the Ukraine crisis. Earlier this month, he visited Kiev before travelling to Moscow, where he discussed the situation with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

China, which has traditionally maintained a neutral stance on the Ukraine crisis, has been seeking to play a more active role in international affairs in recent years. Its involvement in efforts to resolve the Ukraine crisis is seen by some analysts as part of a broader strategy to increase its influence in Europe and challenge the U.S.’s global leadership.

China has also been seeking to strengthen its economic ties with Europe, particularly through its Belt and Road Initiative, a massive infrastructure project aimed at connecting China with Europe and other parts of the world. During his visit, Hui urged European governments to view China as an economic alternative to the US, highlighting the potential benefits of cooperation with China on infrastructure projects and other areas.