“I’ve been hearing now for the past three months (that) China is going to provide significant weapons to Russia… They haven’t yet. Doesn’t mean they won’t but they haven’t yet,” Biden said at a press conference during this trip to Canada. “I don’t take China lightly. I don’t take Russia lightly.”
Biden dismissed the idea of reproachment between China and Russia despite Xi Jinping’s recent trip to Moscow.
What Exactly did China Send?
China sent copies of the U.S. M16 rifle, manufactured by North Industries Group Corporation Limited (Norinco), to a Russian company called Tekhkrim that does business with Moscow’s military. Shipping manifests were labeled as “civilian hunting rifles,” a Politico report from March 16 claimed. It explained that data provided by the customs aggregation site ImportGenius indicated the shipments took place between last June and December.
Shipments of body armor to Russian entities was similarly detected. Data showed that Turkey acted as a place of transit between the Chinese and Russians. Some of the body armor came from the Chinese company Xinxing Guangzhou Import & Export Co.
The U.S. sanctioned Chinese drone manufacturer Da-Jiang Innovations Science & Technology Co., also known as DJI Technology, sent drone parts via a Russian United Arab Emirates (UAE)-based distributor in November and December. The parts included cameras and batteries. This company has close ties with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA).
Thus far, Politico conceded that no evidence exists as of yet that Tekhrim had sent the Chinese assault rifles to Ukraine. The DJI Technology drones, however, have been active on the Ukrainian battlefield for months. The drones have been used to drop grenades and other small munitions on Ukrainian military positions by Russian forces.
DJI has, however, denied providing its drones to either side in the conflict since it began over a year ago. The Chinese company’s claims that it stopped selling its drones to Russia or Ukraine have been widely disputed by the Ukrainian side.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken described the relationship between Russia and China as a “marriage of convenience” and called Russia “a very junior partner.”
A Chinese diplomat denied Politico’s findings.
“China did not create the crisis. It is not a party to the crisis, and has not provided weapons to either side of the conflict,” Chinese embassy spokesman Liu Pengyu told Politico.
German Chancellor Olof Scholz warned earlier this month of serious unnamed “consequences” should reports of Chinese military equipment being sent to Russia for use in Ukraine be confirmed.
“We all agree that there must be no weapons deliveries, and the Chinese government has stated that it wouldn’t deliver any,” Scholz said. “That is what we are demanding and we are watching it.”
The U.S. believes that dual-use civilian goods that could be used for military purposes are already believed to have been shipped from China to Russia, Blinken said last month.
“We’ve already started to see sanctions against people [moving] military material to Russia. I’m sure we’re going to be seeing the EU and other countries target those people that are helping a lot of this material to get to Russia,” James Byrne from the Royal United Services Institute, a U.K.-based defense think tank, told Politico.
MORE: Is AOC a Sellout?
John Rossomando’s work has been featured in numerous publications such as The American Thinker, Daily Wire, Red Alert Politics, CNSNews.com, The Daily Caller, Human Events, Newsmax, The American Spectator, TownHall.com, and Crisis Magazine. He also served as senior managing editor of The Bulletin, a 100,000-circulation daily newspaper in Philadelphia, and received the Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors first-place award in 2008 for his reporting.