Russia ‘Most Direct Threat To World Order’ – EU Chiefs

Russia ‘Most Direct Threat To World Order’ - EU Chiefs
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen
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Top European officials have warned that Russia poses the ‘most direct threat’ to world order while urging China to play a more constructive role in the international scene as they held talks in Tokyo.

Africa Daily News, New York reports that European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and European Council President Charles Michel are currently in Japan for talks that have touched on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine but also growing concerns about China’s role in Asia and beyond.

Russia ‘is today the most direct threat to the world order with the barbaric war against Ukraine, and its worrying pact with China,’ von der Leyen claimed after talks with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.

The annual summit comes at a time when the international community rallying to pressure Moscow over Ukraine.

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‘Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is not just a matter for Europe, but it shakes the core of the international order including Asia. This must not be tolerated,’ Kishida stated, whose government has joined tough sanctions on Moscow, including on energy.

Africa Daily News, New York also gathered that Beijing’s increasingly muscular stance in Asia was also on the agenda, with the EU looking to take a more strategic role in confronting China.

‘Our cooperation in Ukraine is critical in Europe, but it’s also important in the Indo-Pacific and we also want to deepen our consultation on a more assertive China,’ said Michel.

‘China must stand up to defend the multilateral system that it has benefitted from in developing its country.’

Von der Leyen stated that the EU and Japan were stepping up cooperation including launching a digital partnership that will focus on competitiveness and security.

She said the two sides would also work on supply chains, which have been disrupted by the pandemic and the war in Ukraine, but are also the subject of worry about China’s role in chip production.

“There are materials and technologies that have become essential to our economy and everyday lives, like semiconductors for example. We must be able to count on trustworthy supply chains,” she said.

– Infrastructure investment –
Japan and the EU have been working to strengthen ties, including with a landmark 2019 trade deal, and Tokyo has broken with past diplomatic postures to take a strong stand on Ukraine.

It has sanctioned Russian businesses and officials, sent humanitarian and financial aid to Ukraine and joined a G7 pledge to phase out or ban Russian oil.

Von der Leyen and Michel are due to hold a working lunch with Kishida later Thursday, with Michel visiting Hiroshima on Friday.

Africa Daily News, New York

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