China’s Defense Minister, Wei Feng, attended the Moscow International Security Conference on Tuesday. The official had two messages to deliver for Russia.
Feng announced, “I am visiting Russia as a new defense minister of China to show the world a high level of development of our bilateral relations and firm determination of our armed forces to strengthen strategic cooperation.”
He continued: “Second, to support the Russian side in organizing the Moscow International Security Conference the Chinese side has come to show Americans the close ties between the armed forces of China and Russia, especially in this situation. We’ve come to support you. The Chinese side is ready to express with the Russian side our common concerns and common position on important international problems at international venues as well.”
The same day, Russia reportedly delivered the first pair of S-400 Triumf Air Defense Systems to China as part of a 2014 government-to-government contract. More S-400’s are expected to be delivered in the future as part of a $3 billion agreement between the two countries.
Also on Tuesday, the foreign ministers of China and North Korea met in Beijing. China’s Wang Yi reiterated the “important common understanding” between the two countries that a denuclearized Korean peninsula would be achieved.
North Korea’s foreign minister, Ri Yong-Ho, is expected to visit Russia in April. Meanwhile, Japan’s prime minister, Shinzo Abe, plans to visit President Trump in the US in the coming weeks. Both talks are set to occur prior to a prospective meeting between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Abe stated, “I hope to thoroughly discuss North Korea and other issues of mutual interest between Japan and the US,” to “reaffirm the United States-Japan alliance as a cornerstone of peace, stability, and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region.”
Japan is also expected to address President Trump’s recent tariff announcements, as Abe expressed hopes to “explore ways to expand fair and reciprocal trade and investment ties.”