Moscow [Russia],March 20: Russian President Vladimir Putin today welcomed China's "willingness to play a constructive role in resolving" the conflict in Ukraine, as Beijing wants to mediate between Moscow and Kiev.
"We welcome China's willingness to play a constructive role in resolving the crisis" in Ukraine, Putin said in an article written for a Chinese newspaper ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to Russia, the Kremlin said.
Putin said he was "grateful" to China for its "balanced" attitude towards "events in Ukraine".
"Russia is open to solving the Ukrainian crisis by political and diplomatic means," the Russian president added.
However, Putin insists that Kyiv recognize "new geopolitical realities", namely the annexation of four Ukrainian regions to Russia last fall, as well as Crimea in 2014.
"Unfortunately, the ultimatums to Russia prove that they (Ukrainians) are far from that reality and have no interest in seeking a solution," Putin said.
In the same text, the President of Russia expressed "great expectations" from the visit of his Chinese colleague.
"We have high expectations for the upcoming talks. We have no doubt that they will give new and strong momentum to the entire bilateral cooperation," Putin said, adding that Russian-Chinese relations are at the "highest point" in their history.
Chinese President Xi Jinping is visiting Russia starting tomorrow.
Source: Beta News Agency