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It’s probably no coincidence that newly-minted Chinese leader Xi Jinping chose Moscow, where he arrived Friday for a three-day visit, to be his first foreign destination.

Over the coming weekend Mr. Xi will huddle in the Kremlin with President Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, and other Russian officials to discuss the usual list of items on the two countries’ burgeoning bilateral trade agenda: Russian gas, oil, arms, and engineering goods in exchange for Chinese consumer products. Official sources say they expect about 30 agreements to be signed, mainly in the field of energy.

But underlying that is a growing sense that the two countries are being driven together by shifting geopolitical winds, which are alienating each from the West while intensifying the need for more reliable partnerships. As Xi arrived in Moscow Friday, Mr. Putin stressed that ties between Russia and China have never been stronger, and they are set to grow warmer still.

Continue reading on www.csmonitor.com

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