China Expresses Outrage at Russia

China Expresses Outrage at Russia

China criticized Russia after its border authorities allegedly denied a Chinese social media influencer from entering the country, a rare clash between the two countries that have grown closer in recent years.

A Chinese video blogger, known as Jin Wenxin, was allegedly denied entry from Russia after allegedly trying to enter from Kazakhstan, according to a report from the South China Morning Post on Friday. Jin posted a video to Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok, and alleged that Russian border authorities treated him and his four friends like criminals and went through their luggage three times, eventually forcing them to return to Kazakhstan after they allegedly refused to comply with orders.

The incident that happened on July 29 drew a response from Beijing, which has been perhaps Russia’s most powerful supporter amid its invasion of Ukraine that has alienated Moscow from much of the West. As Ukraine’s allies, including the United States and most of Europe, have issued sanctions on Russia’s economy and provided Ukraine with military and humanitarian support, China has sought to strengthen its ties to Russia.

The Chinese embassy in Russia said the incident was not in line with the increasingly close relationship between the two countries.

China expressed outrage at Russia
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping meet in Brasilia, Brazil, on November 13, 2019. China expressed outrage with Russia over the alleged treatment of a social media influencer who was denied entry into Russia.
Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

« We’ve made clear that this incident seriously violated the legitimate rights of Chinese citizens, and was totally out of line of the currently amicable relationship between China and Russia, and the growing trend of closer exchange of personnel between our two countries, » the statement said, according to the South China Morning Post.

The Chinese embassy asked Russia to investigate « the excessive law enforcement of its border officials » and provide Beijing with a satisfactory response.

According to Russian state news agency Tass, Russian authorities denied their entry « because the purpose of their trip, indicated in the application for obtaining a visa, did not coincide with the real situation, which is a violation of the relevant norms of Russian legislation. »

Russia described the case as an isolated incident, Tass reported.

Jin, who has amassed more than 900,000 followers on Douyin, said the incident occurred as he and his friends sought to take a road trip from Kazakhstan to Russia, with stops in Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, according to the South China Morning Post. In his video, he said they had secured the documents needed to travel throughout the trip.

« After we were denied entry, they demanded to take our fingerprints and photos, which made us feel like criminals, » he said, according to the South China Morning Post.

Newsweek reached out to the Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry for comment via email.

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