West would respond if China decided to give Russia arms – Lithuanian foreign minister

  • 2023-02-20
  • LETA/BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – China would face sanctions from the Western community if it decided to provide arms to Russia for its war against Ukraine, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis said on Monday.  

His comment came a day after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said China was "considering providing lethal support" to Moscow ranging "from ammunition to the weapons themselves".

"I think that China might be betting on the fact that the global North, as it is trendily called now, is too much focused on Ukraine," Lithuania's top diplomat told reporters in Brussels. 

"There were those who expected the West, global North, not to be united when it came to Russia's attack on Ukraine. We were united, (...) so I would think that drawing from this lesson, there would be enough arguments for China not to assist Russia in its genocidal war in Ukraine," he said.  

Landsbergis said he was "very much concerned" about the information, adding that the West must send a "very clear signal" that it can agree on "sanctions, isolation and other things".

"I think it would be unimaginable for us not to have any sort of answer," he said, speaking about possible cooperation between Russia and China.

Much of the international community is worried about the increasingly close ties between Beijing and Moscow, as well as China's refusal to condemn outright the Kremlin's aggression in Ukraine.

Beijing on Monday condemned what it called "false" claims by the United States that China is considering arming Russia in its war against Ukraine.