NOVO-OGARYOVO, December 15. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has said in a video call with Chinese leader Xi Jinping that he was looking forward to their in-person meeting in February 2022.
"My respected friend! Dear Chairman Xi Jinping! I expect that we will finally be able to meet in-person in Beijing next February. As we agreed earlier, we will hold talks before attending the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympic Games," the Russian head of state noted. He also thanked Xi Jinping for inviting him to the event.
"I would like to point out that we always support each other when it comes to international sports cooperation, including our position against attempts to politicize sports and the Olympic movement," the Russian leader said. He was confident that the upcoming Winter Olympics would be organized in the best possible way.
Putin emphasized that Moscow and Beijing would celebrate 2022 and 2023 as the Russian and Chinese Years of Cooperation in Physical Education and Sports. "All in all, given the large scale of cooperation between our countries, we will need to discuss a wide range of pressing matters today. I would also like to take this opportunity to wish you and all our Chinese friends a happy new year. I wish you happiness, good health and all the best," the Russian president concluded.
The Winter Olympic Games will take place in Beijing on February 4-20.
On December 6, the United States announced a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Olympics in Beijing, which involves US officials refusing to travel there. However, US athletes will compete in the Games. Washington informed its allies of its plans, so far the US initiative has been supported by Australia, the UK and Canada. In response, China branded the move as a political scheme contradicting the Olympic Charter and vowed to undertake countermeasures.