According to US officials, China has not yet supplied weapons to Russia in the war with Ukraine


Top government officials said on Sunday there is no evidence China has sent deadly military aid to Russia, a move Beijing would consider. A top US official also said China is surprised by the steadfast support of Ukraine’s allies and Russia’s poor military performance on the battlefield over the past year.

The comments, by National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan and CIA Director William J. Burns, were made during separate appearances on Sunday morning news shows.

Sullivan said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that Washington will continue to send “a strong message” to Beijing against giving military aid to Moscow “when they use their weapons to bomb cities, kill civilians and commit atrocities.”

Coverage of the war in Ukraine

Such a move “would be a big mistake, and China should not want to be part of it,” Sullivan said. But, he added, “At the moment, China has made no progress, as far as we can see. We haven’t seen them do it yet.”

Burns said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” that there are US intelligence agencies “suggesting” that China is “considering” giving Russia deadly military equipment, confirming previous news reports, including from The Washington Post. But he added: “We also don’t see a final decision made yet and we don’t see any evidence of actual shipments of lethal equipment.”

China is considering sending artillery shells to Russia, US officials say

Burns added that it appears that Chinese President Xi Jinping was surprised by the weakness of the Russian army, which was expected to capture the Ukrainian capital within days of last year’s invasion, as well as by the solid support of Western countries.

The solidarity, Burns said, was in the willingness of the US and European allies “to absorb a certain amount of economic cost in the interest of inflicting greater economic damage on Russia over time.” A coalition of countries has imposed economic sanctions on Russian companies, Russian oligarchs and companies doing business in Russia.

“All that, I think, has made Xi Jinping sober to some extent,” Burns said.

Burns also said Russia is not “serious” about entering into diplomatic negotiations. Russian President Vladimir Putin believes Americans have “attention deficit disorder” and will eventually stop caring about Ukraine, helping him believe he can wait out the Western alliance, Burns said.

He said that This attitude was expressed during Burns’ meeting three months ago with Russian spy chief Sergei Naryshkin, who conveyed a “very defiant attitude” and “a sense of stubbornness”.

That reflects “Putin’s own opinion, his own conviction today that he can make time work for him, that he believes that he can crush the Ukrainians, that he can exhaust our European allies, that political fatigue will eventually set in.”

Yet Putin’s defiance and his military’s struggles emphasize alliances he may form with strategic partners, worrying many members of Congress.

Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Tex.), chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said on Sunday during an appearance on ABC’s “This Week” that intelligence reports suggested China is considering sending 100 drones to Russia.

McCaul said such a meeting is “deeply disturbing” because “it may be Ukraine today, Taiwan tomorrow,” referring to the island whose sovereignty China does not recognize, which is also a major manufacturer of vital semiconductors. for the global economy.

Concerns about China’s aggressive stance also heightened after US officials this month shot down a Chinese spy balloon after it passed over the mainland United States; US officials said the balloon is part of China’s extensive international surveillance program.

McCaul went on to say, “We haven’t seen anything like it since my father’s generation, World War II.”

“We cannot throw our heads in the sand and ignore this,” McCaul added. “Otherwise the Russians will be at the Polish border and Chairman Xi will invade Taiwan.”

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