06:53 GMT +315 October 2019
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    The Russian and Chinese national flags are seen on the table as Russia's President Vladimir Putin (back L) and his China's President Xi Jinping (back R) stand during a signing ceremony at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing on November 9, 2014.

    Russian-Chinese Cooperation Not Aimed Against Third States - Beijing

    © AFP 2019 / HOW HWEE YOUNG
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Close cooperation between Russia and China is not aimed against third states, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry said on 30 January following US intelligence claims that Moscow-Beijing ties were meant to defy the United States.

    "Relations between Russia and China are really at their highest level in history because we have left behind outdated zero-sum games which presuppose that power states may be either allies or rivals…. [Russia and China] follow new format of international relations which do not allow for confrontation or alliance and are not aimed against third countries", Geng Shuang said.

    The statement comes after US Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats told US senators on 29 January that cooperation between Russia and China was "closer than it'd been in many decades" and warned that such ties were used to challenge the United States.

    According to Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov, Russia and China were closely cooperating on all the issues of the agenda in the field of strengthening the nuclear non-proliferation regime and would further enhance this productive interaction.

    READ MORE: US Intelligence Chief Claims Russia, China Will Meddle in 2020 Elections

    On 30-31 January, representatives of five major nuclear powers — China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States — or "nuclear five," hold a conference in Beijing and discuss problems related to nuclear weapons control and proliferation.

    In October, US President Donald Trump announced his country's intention to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) with Russia. The treaty prohibited the development of ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles whose ranges are between 500 and 5,500 kilometres (from 311 to 3,317 miles). The withdrawal means that the United States can now deploy ground-based missile systems in Asia, in high proximity to China.

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