China's Xi wants strong military ties with Russia
MOSCOW (AP) - The new Chinese president met with Russia's military leaders to reinforce the main message of his trip that the two countries must work together more closely if they want to counter rising US influence in Asia.
Xi Jinping said his visit to the Defense Ministry on Saturday was intended to show that China and Russia will strengthen their military and political relations and improve cooperation between their armed forces.
Russia's state media stressed that Xi was the first foreign leader ever to be allowed inside the Russian armed forces' Operational Command Center.
He began his trip to Russia - his first outside of China since becoming president last week - by holding talks in the Kremlin on Friday with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Xi pointedly told Putin that he expected Russia and China to "resolutely back each other's efforts to protect sovereignty, security and developmental interests."