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Wednesday, 19 July, 2000, 15:13 GMT 16:13 UK
Russian press upbeat over Beijing
Putin in Beijing
Putin sees red in Beijing over US anti-missile plans

Moscow newspapers see the China-Russia summit as a boost for Russia's global standing.

The summit sent a signal to the world that Moscow and Beijing were stepping up their ties and working out a joint stance on Washington's missile defence plans, Nezavismaya Gazeta writes.

A Russo-Chinese tandem could significantly balance America's aspirations to hegemony

Nezavismaya Gazeta

The two countries had shown that "America's aims in the world could be balanced through cooperation".

It was, perhaps, the first time Russia and China had openly warned the US of the dangers that the pursuit of the missile defence programme posed to global stability and its own interests.

'Yankees' left out in the cold

Komsomolskaya Pravda sees the summit as little less than a strategic triumph for Moscow and Beijing.

Under the headline "Is Russia's and China's meat America's poison?", it wrote that the summit stood to leave "the Yankees the odd man out" on the anti-missile issue.

Stressing the personal rapport between the two presidents, the paper recalled how impressed Putin had been by Jiang's mastery of the Russian language.

It's time the Russian president started learning Chinese

Komsomolskaya Pravda

Putin was only three minutes late for his meeting with Jiang Zemin, while he had "got held up" a whole seven minutes before his recent talks with the Pope and nearly six minutes ahead of a meeting with Germany's Gerhard Schroeder.

The paper was rather less impressed by the effect of the summit on economic ties, preferring to quote Chinese diplomats who talked of "a strong head but weak legs".

More bark than bite

Segodnya, a paper with little time for the Putin administration since the campaign unleashed against its owner Vladimir Gusinskiy, contrasted Putin's summit with Boris Yeltsin's visits to China when agreements, though often fantastical, were signed by the dozen.

Putin turned to Jiang Zemin for a morale-booster ahead of the G8 summit


"Moscow now has different priorities - ideology and counter-propaganda," the paper remarked after describing the Beijing summit as being mainly a West-bashing exercise.

The summit's true importance to Russia was to give it a new card to play at the G8 summit in Japan.

Okinawa summit room
Okinawa will be Putin's first meeting with the G7

The "Big Seven" were being given two options, Segodnya said.

They could talk to Russia on an equal footing, skirting thorny issues such as Chechnya, press freedom and bad debts, or they could come up against a "Big Two" in the east.

BBC Monitoring, based in Caversham in southern England, selects and translates information from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages.

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See also:

18 Jul 00 | Asia-Pacific
China and Russia: shallow alliance
18 Jul 00 | Europe
In Pictures: Old foes, new smiles
18 Jul 00 | Asia-Pacific
Russia-China attack US missile plan
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