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Even as the EU and the US are coordinating concerted attempts to isolate Moscow over the Ukraine crisis, Lavrov made a strategic one-day visit to China.
Apart from Ukraine, Lavrov and Yi also discussed the upcoming visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to Shanghai in May.
“We believe that the upcoming visit of the Russian president will become this year’s major political event in Russian-Chinese relations, and its outcome will be an important step toward a closer Russian-Chinese partnership,” asserted Lavrov.
The Russian foreign minister thanked China for its ‘unbiased stance’ on events in Ukraine, adding that the key to solving the crisis lies in constitutional reform for the country.
“We are sure that the use of force to ease the situation in southeastern [Ukraine] is unacceptable,” Lavrov told reporters after the meeting with Yi.
“We categorically condemn and demand the cease of so-called initiatives to send security forces and army divisions that are in breach of the norms of Ukrainian and international law to quash protests,” the Russian foreign minister added.
Meanwhile, in Beijing on Tuesday Lavrov and Wang discussed the situation in Syria, the Iranian nuclear program, peace in the Korean Peninsula, as well as that in Afghanistan in light of the recent presidential elections.
In an interview to China Daily on Monday, Lavrov had said Russia and China attach great importance to cooperation within BRICS and the Russia-India-China trilateral format (RIC).
He underlined that Beijing and Moscow will align on issues of mutual concern for a more “polycentric world”.
“Close cooperation in the international arena is the most important aspect of the Chinese-Russian strategic partnership. Our countries advocate a more just and democratic polycentric world order based on fundamental principles of international law and the central coordinating role of the UN,” said Lavrov.
China-Russia bilateral trade reached $88.8 billion in 2013.
Meanwhile, Russian deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich said on Monday the two allies will a 30-year deal to supply pipeline gas to China during Putin’s visit to China in May.
“The gas talks are wrapping up. There is a common intention to complete this work before the Russian president’s visit to China in May this year,” Interfax news agency quoted Dvorkovich as saying in a meeting with Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev on Monday.
Russia, the biggest exporter of energy has been increasing oil supplies to China, the biggest energy consumer in the world. Beijing is also engaged in a gas production project on the Russian Arctic shelf.