Der SpiegelDer Spiegel

Fears grow of new Cold War between U.S. and China

By Bernhard Zand, Christina Hebel, Christoph Giesen, Georg Fahrion, and Ann-Dorit Boy

09 Mar 2023 · 9 min read

Editor's Note

Russia's invasion of Ukraine has injected "enormous tension" into the relationship between the U.S. and China. In many ways, these tensions are reminiscent of the Cold War, reports Der Spiegel.

In a boxy, pink building in Beijing's diplomatic quarter, sandwiched between the Iranian and the Kazakh embassies, a security guard is standing outside the gate, freezing despite his winter coat. Zhanna Leshchynska's office is located in the building behind him, Ukraine's chargé d'affaires in Beijing. Two years ago, her boss died of a heart attack, and she has been running the diplomatic representation ever since. It's a herculean task: Her country is at war, but no one in China's capital seems much to care.

It takes exactly 27 minutes to walk around the Russian Embassy in Beijing. Several apartment buildings, office towers, a hospital, two sports fields and a park are part of the huge Russian enclave over which Moscow's ambassador in Beijing presides. Until recently, that man was Andrey Denisov. Born in 1952 in Kharkiv in what was then the Soviet Republic of Ukraine, he studied Sinology and later became a key figure in Russian-Chinese relations.

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