Xi finally congratulates Biden on victory

BEIJING, Nov. 9, 2017 (Xinhua) — Chinese President Xi Jinping (L) holds a grand ceremony to welcome U.S. President Donald Trump at the square outside the east gate of the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, Nov. 9, 2017. (Xinhua/Lan Hongguang/IANS)

Washington/Beijing, Nov 25 (IANS) Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday became the latest world leader to congratulate US President-elect Joe Biden.

“Promoting the healthy and stable development of China-US relations is not only in the fundamental interests of both peoples, but also meets the common expectation of the international community.

“I hope to see both sides uphold the spirit of non-conflict, non-confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation, and focus on cooperation while managing and controlling disputes,” he said in his message of congratulations, the Xinhua news agency reported.

Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan on Wednesday also sent a congratulatory message to Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, Xinhua said.

Nearly a week after Biden and Harris delivered their victory speeches after they were projected winners even as President Donald Trump refused to concede and continued to allege fraud, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman had, on November 13, extended congratulations to the Democratic winners, but noted that the outcome would be “ascertained in accordance with US laws and procedures.”

With Xi’s congratulations, Russian President Vladimir Putin is the only significant leader who is yet to greet Biden.

On Sunday, the Russian President had said that he is still not ready to recognise Biden as the winner of the US presidential elections, but is ready to “work with anyone who has the confidence of the American people”.

“But that confidence can only be given to a candidate whose victory has been recognised by the opposing party, or after the results are confirmed in a legitimate, legal way,” he had said, adding that the decision to not congratulate Biden was “a formality” with no ulterior motives.

Asked if this would strain relations, Putin said that he believed that relations between the US and Russia have already been ruined.

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