Sec. Blinken: China Will Face ‘Serious Consequences,’ if They Provide Russia With ‘Lethal Support’

( — While attending the Munich Security Conference on Feb. 19, Secretary of State Antony Blinken joined Chuck Todd on NBC’s Meet the Press to discuss tensions between the U.S. and China. Regarding China’s contributions to Russia for the ongoing war in Ukraine, Blinken said, “We are very concerned that China’s considering providing lethal support to Russia.”

“I also had an opportunity – because we’re here in Munich, as you know, focused primarily on Russia’s ongoing aggression against Ukraine — to share our very real concerns about China’s support for Russia in that war,” Blinken told NBC. “And what we’ve seen in, over the past years is, of course, some political and rhetorical support, even some non-lethal support. But we are very concerned that China’s considering providing lethal support to Russia in its aggression against Ukraine.”

The 2023 Munich Security Conference met Feb. 17-19 to largely discuss the Russian-Ukrainian War. Twelve countries were surveyed with seven of them having Russia in their top five index score for “risk is imminent.” China remains relatively low on the list of countries surveyed with it only being in the top five of two countries.

However, the United States has China just outside the top five with it coming in at number six for “imminent risk.” The members of the U.S. that were surveyed only have Russia ahead of China by five index points. The report states, “there has been no corresponding increase in the perceived risk posed by China. It is down two places and up one point, with an overall index score of 61. There is, however, a marked partisan split, just as in November 2021. The index score among Democrats is 59, and among Republicans 70.”  

Furthermore, the report highlights that “62% of U.S. adults feel the threat from Russia is imminent.”


Blinken, regarding the possibility of China’s lethal support to Russia, told Meet the Press, “I made clear that that would have serious consequences in our relationship as well, something President Biden has shared directly with President Xi on several occasions.”

Todd then asked Blinken for evidence to back up the claims of lethal support by the Chinese.

He responded, “China’s having – trying to have it both ways.  Publicly they present themselves as a country striving for peace in Ukraine. But privately, as I said, we’ve seen already over these past months the provision of non-lethal assistance that does go directly to aiding and abetting Russia’s war effort.”

“And some further information that we are sharing today and that I think will be out there soon that indicates that they are strongly considering providing lethal assistance to Russia,” added Blinken. “To the best of our knowledge, they haven’t crossed that line yet.”

Todd pressed Blinken for real evidence.

“In what form?” asked Todd. Blinken responded, “Chuck, I don’t want to get into the details in this moment.  But there are various kinds of lethal assistance that they are at least contemplating providing, to include weapons.”

Again, Todd asked, “What else would you describe as lethal assistance that wasn’t weapons?”

“Well, again, I’ll let the information that we have and that we’re sharing speak for itself,” he said. “But the main concern is material support to Russia’s war effort that would have a lethal effect.”


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