German Chancellor Olaf Scholz looks on during a news conference with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, following a closed German cabinet meeting at the government’s guest house in Schloss Meseberg, near Gransee, Germany on March 5, 2023. | Photo Credit: Reuters
German chancellor Olaf Scholz on Sunday in an interview by CNN, two days after his meeting with US President Joe Biden in Washington commented on China considering aid to Russia with arms and ammunition for the Russian-Ukrainian war.
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German Chancellor Olaf Scholz says there would be “consequences” if China sends weapons to Russia for its war in Ukraine, but he is fairly optimistic that China will refrain from doing so.
As questioned by CNN, if he could imagine sanctioning China if they decide to aid Russia, Scholz replied: “I think it would have consequences, but we are now in a stage where we are making clear that this should not happen, and I am relatively optimistic that we will be successful with our request in this case, but we will have to look at [it] and we have to be very, very cautious.”
He did not elaborate on the nature of the consequences.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz [R], welcomes European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen [L], for a meeting as part of a two-day closed meeting of the German government at Meseberg palace in Gransee near Berlin, Germany, Sunday, March 5, 2023. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)[ASSOCIATED PRESS/Michael Sohn.
After Scholz’s cabinet met the President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen back in Germany he was asked whether he received any factual information about China considering helping Russia in Moscow with arms and ammunition for the war and whether Germany would sanction China if it chooses to deliver Russia.
Scholz did not answer the question about sanctions though, he just answered “We all agree that there must be no weapons deliveries and the Chinese government has stated that it would not deliver any,” the Chancellor replied. “That is what we are demanding and we are watching it.”
Germany has Europe’s biggest economy, and China has been its single biggest trading partner in recent years.
U.S. officials have warned recently that China could step off the sidelines and begin providing arms and ammunition to Russia. Ahead of his trip, Mr. Scholz had urged China to refrain from sending weapons and instead use its influence to press Russia to withdraw its troops from Ukraine.
China in recent times has agreed to not be aiding Russia with weapons for the war. Germany recently commented that if China still chooses to help there would be consequences though the nature of these “consequences” have not been elaborated.
Keywords: Russia/Ukraine/Germany/China/Russia-Ukraine war.