While the Biden administration is working to reconstitute America’s alliances discarded and disparaged by the Trump administration, China is accelerating its foreign policy strategy of creating alliances with those who share dislike of the West, especially its sanctions. China’s concern has escalated due to sanctions having been recently imposed over suppression of political rights in Hong Kong and the oppression of Uyghurs in Xinjiang.
The alliance with Russia has been developing since 2018, cemented with visits and agreements between Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping. Most recently, China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, met with Russia’s foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, in China to jointly protest sanctions, When asked about sanctions, Lavrov said “It’s [the West’s] form of democracy” not theirs. And Wang added his view of sanctions “will not be embraced by the international community,” a reference to their belief that many members of the UN share an anti-Western sentiment on this issue.
China partners with another U.S. sanction target with oil. Iranian foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, joined China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, in Tehran to sign a trade agreement to help Iran to evade U.S. sanctions.