China should show “restraint and sensitivity” towards Ukraine, European Commissioner Mairead McGuinness has said, amid reports Beijing could arm Russia.
The United States believes that China plans on sending “lethal support” to Moscow and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has said this would have “serious consequences” for Beijing.
The Chinese Government has denied the allegation and on Breakfast Business this morning Ms McGuinness said it would raise “very big questions” for the EU if Beijing were to send weapons to Russia.
“My role is implementing sanctions,” she said.
“It is for the member states to decide on the actual sanctions and the details of them.
“I mean, clearly, let's step back for a moment here; I think we've almost gotten used to the fact that there's a war in Ukraine - which I think is tragic - but it is the case.
“But we also are aware that this is a threat to all.
“I mean, an illegal invasion of a sovereign country by a very big neighbour is a threat to all.
“We would hope that global players, global partners, would understand the need for restraint and sensitivity around this issue because we want to see peace.
“Nobody wants to see Ukraine under attack.”
The Chinese Government has never condemned the invasion of Ukraine - nor has it endorsed it.
In September, at a summit in Uzbekistan, Putin thanked China for its “balanced position” but acknowledged that Beijing had "questions and concerns" about the conflict.
President Xi Jinping is reportedly planning a visit to Moscow in the coming months.