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Germany's Scholz Calls on China to Use 'Influence' on Russia

Chinese President Xi Jinping and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Beijing. Kay Nietfeld / POOL / AFP

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Friday that he had urged Chinese President Xi Jinping to use Beijing's "influence" on Moscow to stop the war in Ukraine.

"I told President [Xi] that it is important for China to use its influence on Russia," Scholz said.

"Russia must immediately stop the attacks under which the civilian population is suffering daily and withdraw from Ukraine."

Scholz, on a one-day visit to Beijing, said Russia, China, and the West had agreed to respect the UN charter and "principles such as sovereignty and territorial integrity," which he said Russia was violating in Ukraine.

At a news conference, the German leader also called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to prolong a deal allowing grain shipments to continue from Ukraine via the Black Sea.

"Hunger must not be used as a weapon," Scholz said.

Grain shipments from Ukraine resumed Thursday after Russia returned to a deal allowing their safe passage following international pressure.

But Moscow said it had yet to decide whether to extend the grain deal beyond Nov. 19 – the renewal date written into the original agreement to stave off a global food emergency that was brokered by the UN and Turkey.

One of the world's largest grain exporters, Ukraine was forced to halt almost all deliveries after Russia invaded the country on Feb. 24.

Putin insists Ukrainian grain goes mainly to European countries, rather than poorer nations, an accusation Ukraine and European countries have refuted, saying that Ukrainian grain exports are essential for some of the poorest countries on earth.

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