In the face of Russia’s continued defeats on the battlefield in Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on September 21 the mobilization of 300,000 new troops, further hinting at a nuclear threat. The West called this a “serious escalation” and strongly condemned Putin’s war.

In his speech on September 21, Putin said that the West was trying to weaken and destroy Russia, but Russia “will without doubt use all available means to protect Russia and our people.” After Putin said that he would rather fight to the end, the attitude of the Chinese Communist Party has attracted international attention.

China’s state-run media reported little on Putin’s latest statements, but mainland Chinese netizens have been actively participating in discussions on Weibo. Most Chinese expressed horror and criticized Putin’s actions.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at the United Nations General Assembly on September 22 that China would adhere to an “objective” and “fair” stance. Reuters quoted experts’ analyses as saying that Xi Jinping is unlikely to abandon his “old friend” Putin, and that the CCP will continue to maintain its shameful stance of calling for a peaceful resolution on the one hand, and refuse to condemn Russia, and on the other hand carefully avoid being punished by the West.

Chinese netizens comment enthusiastically about Putin’s nuclear threat

According to The Epoch Times, the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine said that Putin’s order to mobilize partly showed signs of Russia’s defeat in the war. Many European countries have condemned Putin’s mobilization as a “bad and wrong” decision, and recruiting more soldiers is nothing more than adding new “cannon fodder.” Many Chinese netizens believe that Putin is on the brink of danger.

Netizen Kuruko Yang said, “Russia will lose, even the pants are gone.”

Netizen “Zhiyanzhiyan” said, “Russia will lose! Putin will lose! The special military operation turned into the Patriotic War, [is] the biggest joke in the world since World War II.”

Others said that Russia’s nuclear threat to the international community is the way of an evil government.

Others denounced Putin’s madness. Some netizens said that China should focus on national interests, not help Putin and keep a neutral attitude.

“Referendum” is a sensitive word, Beijing is most afraid of Taiwan holding a referendum

Ukraine’s pro-Russian organization announced that Lugansk, Donetsk, Kherson, and Zaporizhia will hold referendums on joining Russia from September 23 to 27. Putin expressed support for this action. The Chinese media barely reported on it.

Zhang Yang, a commentator on current affairs, told RFA that the CCP would not support any referendum under any circumstances, because “referendum” is a sensitive word. Russia launched referendums in the territories it occupies, which for China is a strong blow. Should the Russian referendum turn out to be legal, it means that the West may also support a Taiwan referendum. And the Chinese Communist Party fears such referendums the most.

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