Chinese leader Xi Jinping departed from his support for Moscow during talks with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz

Xi Jinping welcomed German leader Olaf Scholz to Beijing on Friday as the countries agreed to approve BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccine for foreign residents in China. The chancellor has sought to preserve economic ties while responding to Beijing’s support for Moscow amid the Ukraine war. Photo: Pool/via Reuters

China has warned Russia against threatening to use nuclear weapons in the conflict in Ukraine, in a rare departure from its usual tacit support for Moscow’s positions.

The warning came during talks on Friday between Chinese leader Xi Jinping and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Beijing, according to Mr. Scholz and the Chinese state news agency Xinhua.

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