The media should not quote Russian President Vladimir Putin's remarks on China-U.S. trade dispute out of context, said a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, saying that any attempts to drive a wedge between China and Russia are doomed to fail.
Spokesperson Geng Shuang said this at a daily press briefing Wednesday when asked to comment on the remarks reported by the media.
According to media report, Putin was asked during the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum last week about his view of the China-U.S. trade dispute. He answered by citing a Chinese proverb which said "when tigers fight, the smart monkey sits aside and waits to see who wins."
"I have seen the reports, yet I suggest those media carefully read the full text of President Putin's remarks or carefully watch the whole video clip, rather than quote his words out of context," Geng said.
According to Geng, Putin cited the Chinese proverb but he continued by saying that things are changing, and the situation depicted in the Chinese proverb has also changed.
The U.S. has always prided itself on free trade and the principle of world economic democracy, but as the competitors grow stronger and stronger, the U.S. has resorted to various sorts of restrictions, such as launching a tariff war.
Putin said such practices of the U.S. would undermine the world economy. Russia stands for "fair and democratic" principles in trade rules.
"I think this is the real attitude taken by President Putin and Russia," Geng said.
Stressing that both China and Russia firmly oppose unilateralism, protectionism and bullying practices, Geng said Chinese President Xi Jinping reached important consensus with Putin during his visit to Russia last week, including further deepening comprehensive strategic coordination, working together to build an open world economy, promoting multilateral trading system and upholding the international system with the United Nations as the core and the international order underpinned by international law.
"Any attempts to drive a wedge between China and Russia are doomed to fail," Geng added.