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PacNet #32 – Misreading Medvedev’s China Mission

No matter how presidential Dymitry Medvedev may act, his late May summit in Beijing has been discounted in the West as routine, unsubstantial, and overshadowed by the meetings of his predecessor, Vladimir Putin. The “growing” conflict of interests between Russia and China over various issues – trade, energy, military sales, to mention a few – has also been the focus of media coverage. In keeping with this image, (now) Prime Minister Putin’s visit to Paris a week after was described as more “presidential” than Medvedev’s east-bound mission. These assessments miss important aspects of the evolving and broadening relations between the two largest nations on the Eurasian continent.