China refuses to call Russian attack on Ukraine an ‘invasion,’ deflects blame to U.S.

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Assessment: Within hours, leaders from the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom and beyond condemned the Russian attack.

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson refused to categorize Russia’s attack as an “invasion” during a news conference Thursday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced an attack on Ukraine earlier in the day, and explosions in Kyiv and other cities in Ukraine followed. Ukraine’s military claimed to be engaged in fighting within its borders, and Ukraine President Volodimyr Zelenskyy described the violence as an invasion to destroy the country.

China's Xi Jinping and Russia's Vladimir Putin Bromance in Photos

Within hours, leaders from the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom and beyond condemned the Russian attack. 

China’s assistant foreign minister, Hua Chunying, was asked by reporters several times whether she would call Russia’s attacks an invasion but she repeatedly avoided giving a yes or no answer.

In response to one reporter, Hua appeared to express frustration at the question and said, “The U.S. has been fueling the flame, fanning up the flame, how do they want to put out the fire?”

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