China’s Stance on the War in Ukraine: Implications for Conflict Management and...

Author: Bernardo Mariani

This report outlines China’s position on the war in Ukraine. It examines China’s proposals on the political settlement of the war, China’s motivations for positioning itself as a potential peace broker between Russia and Ukraine, and the international responses to the Chinese proposals. It also appraises the international diplomacy surrounding the war, and avenues for effective engagement with China on conflict management and resolution.

The report argues that while the Chinese proposals somewhat lack substance and are yet to have any major impact on the conflict, they are nonetheless significant. It is in China’s interest that the war ends, or at least de-escalates, and that it contributes to conflict mitigation and resolution. By positioning itself as a facilitator in a political solution to the conflict, a mitigator of the wider global fall-out of the war and, potentially, a post-conflict reconstructor, China is paving the way for its future role in the geopolitical agreement that will end the war.

The Global Transitions Series looks at fragmentations in the global order and how these impact peace and transition settlements. It explores why and how different third-party actors – state, intergovernmental, and non-governmental – intervene in conflicts, and how they see themselves contributing to reduction of conflict and risks of conflict relapse. The series critically assesses the growth and diversification of global and regional responses to contemporary conflicts. It also asks how local actors are navigating this multiplicity of mediators and peacebuilders and how this is shaping conflict outcomes and post-conflict governance.