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The Interesting Role of China

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March 3, 2022 9:27 a.m.

Yesterday, as you no doubt saw, the UN General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to denounce Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. 141 countries voted for the resolution. The 5 who voted against it were an unsurprising list: Russia, two countries Russia essentially owns (Belarus and Syria), another country opposed to any sanctions against bad regimes (North Korea) and Eritrea. The really interesting list though was the 35 abstainers. That list looks like a view into the future, in part because the bulk of the countries abstaining looked less like they were seeking to avoid criticism of Russia than they were following the diplomatic lead of China — the most prominent abstainer on the list.

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