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Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Lands in Beijing for Talks in Wake of Rebellion

Russian deputy foreign minister Andrei Rudenko arrived in Beijing on Sunday for talks with China’s foreign minister Qin Gang just hours after it was confirmed paramilitary supporters of warlord Yevgeny Prigozhin had curtailed their march on Moscow.

The Financial Times reports Chinese state media said the pair “exchanged views . . . on Sino-Russian relations and international and regional issues of common concern.”

No further details were released. Also absent from reports was any direct mention of the failed rebellion and China has made no official statement on the events.

China’s state media has downplayed the drama — on Sunday giving precedence to an exchange of letters between President Xi Jinping and a Belgian zookeeper discussing pandas, the FT report sets out.

It was unclear when Rudenko arrived in Beijing, or whether his visit to China, a key ally of Russia, was in response to the apparent rebellion by heavily armed mercenaries on Friday.

Russia’s foreign ministry said in a statement later on Sunday that China had expressed support for Russia’s leadership in its efforts to stabilize the domestic situation after Saturday’s aborted mutiny by the Wagner group, Reuters reports.

Western leaders including U.S. President Joe Biden said they were closely monitoring the situation.

“China will support Russia while stressing no interference of its internal affairs,” prominent Chinese military expert and TV commentator Song Zhongping told Reuters.

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