BERLIN — German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has warned that China will face “consequences” if it supplies Russia with weapons for its war in Ukraine. Scholz is cautiously optimistic, however.


Scholz made these remarks in a Sunday CNN interview, just two days after meeting with Vice President Joe Biden in the nation’s capital.

Recently, US officials have been warning that China may no longer sit on the sidelines and may begin providing arms and ammunition to Moscow. Scholz had previously urged Beijing not to send weapons but to instead use its influence to press Russia to withdraw its troops from Ukraine before his trip.

Scholz told CNN, “I think it would have consequences, but we are now at a stage where we are making clear that this should not happen, and I’m relatively optimistic that we will be successful with our request in this case, but we will have to look at (it) and we have to be very, very cautious.”
The specific nature of the repercussions was not elaborated upon. The German economy is the largest in Europe, and China has become its most important trading partner in recent years.

Back in Germany on Sunday, Scholz was asked if he had received any hard evidence from the US that China was considering weapons deliveries and if he would support sanctions against Beijing if it helped arm Russia following a meeting between his Cabinet and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
We all agree that there must be no deliveries of weapons, and the Chinese government has said it will not deliver any, the chancellor said. That’s what we’re insisting on, and we’re keeping an eye on it.

The question of sanctions was not answered by him.
We have no evidence for this so far,” von der Leyen stated, “but we must observe it every day.”

The EU’s potential response to China’s provision of military aid to Russia, she said, “is a hypothetical question that can only be answered if it were to become reality and fact.”