According to a Kremlin press briefing, they both lashed out at the US in particular, denouncing the “US policy of interfering in the internal affairs of other states”.
The two leaders spoke during an hour-long phone call on Thursday and discussed establishing a “multipolar, fairer world order”.
The Moscow Times reported that the Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov told journalists: “The leaders of the two countries realise that the US is practically implementing a policy of double containment [toward] both Russia and China.”
The US has sanctions against both Beijing and Moscow right now.
A readout from the Chinese state broadcaster CCTV also reported that Xi suggested the two “should closely collaborate strategically, defend the sovereignty, security and development interests of their respective countries, and resolutely oppose interference in internal affairs by external forces.”
The UK and its allies actually called out Russia for its own sustained attempts to interfere in UK politics and democratic processes only in December 2023.
Meanwhile, China was criticised by Taiwan for “repeated interference” in its elections only in January.
Xi and Putin’s relationship has strengthened significantly since Russia invaded Ukraine, and, according to the Kremlin, the leaders agreed today to continue having “close personal interaction”.
Weeks before the war began, Xi signed up to a “no-limits” friendship with Putin, with a series of long-term energy deals.
Xi went to Moscow last March, and Putin visited Beijing in October – a particularly surprising move from the Russian president, because of the international arrest warrant out against him.
Although the Kremlin’s press service said the bond between their two countries was at “an unprecedentedly high level” right now, they do not have any more visits scheduled.
According to CCTV, Xi said the two countries have “weathered many storms together” and they are “facing new opportunities for development”.
The two also spoke about “the development of Sino-Russian comprehensive partnership and strategic cooperation over the recent period.”
China-Russia trade reached the new high of $218.2 billion (£173.12 billon) during January-November, according to Chinese customs data.
Russia has been able to rely on China as a key economic lifeline since the West imposed unprecedented sanctions on Moscow over its ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
In exchange, China has access to Russia’s cheap energy exports and natural resources.