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International relations

Putin concedes China has 'concerns' on Ukraine in Xi meeting

Beijing's account skips conflict, stresses support for 'respective core interests'

Chinese President Xi Jinping, left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin meet on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, on Sept. 15.   © Sputnik/Kremlin Pool via AP

SHANGHAI -- Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday acknowledged to Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping that Beijing has "concerns" about the Ukraine conflict, while expressing appreciation for China's "balanced position."

The two leaders met on the sidelines of a Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Uzbekistan -- their first face-to-face encounter since Moscow invaded its neighbor in February.

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