Chinese foreign minister opposes unilateral sanctions against Russia

Chinese foreign minister Qin Gang has emphasized his opposition to sanctions by Western countries against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.

Qin spoke to reporters on Tuesday as the National People's Congress continued. It was his first news conference since he assumed the post.

Qin said China believes its duty is to safeguard its core interests. He said China is firmly opposed to all forms of hegemony, power politics, Cold War mentality, division among camps, and containment.

He also said China will protect its national sovereignty, security and profits of development. He indicated that China will keep US involvement in Taiwan, which Beijing sees as a core interest, in check.

Qin also expressed his opposition to decoupling, or economic separation, and unilateral sanctions. He showed consideration for Russia, saying that a certain country is using words like "Cold War" and looking at the relationship between China and Russia through a filter.

He said the two countries will not form an alliance nor counter each other. He also said China will not pose a threat to any country and will not allow intervention or provocation by a third country.