Biden in call with Xi Jinping warns of 'consequences' if China aids Russia, White House

President Biden also reiterated the U.S.'s policy regarding Taiwan, adding that it opposes "any unilateral changes to the status quo."

Updated: March 18, 2022 - 4:18pm

President Biden warned Chinese President Xi Jinping during a phone call on Friday that there would be consequences if China aids Russia amid its invasion of Ukraine, according to the White House.

Biden, in a call the reportedly lasted roughly two hours, said the U.S. has worked to prevent and is responding to Russia's invasion, including imposing costs on the country.

He also "described the implications and consequences if China provides material support to Russia as it conducts brutal attacks against Ukrainian cities and civilians," according to the White House readout of the conversation.

As Biden emphasized his support for a diplomatic solution to the invasion, both presidents agreed to maintain open lines of communication and have their teams follow up on their conversation.

The phone conversation follows reports that China is considering military and financial assistance to Russia as it continues with its invasion of Ukraine.

Xi and Russian President Vladimir Putin met during the 2022 Winter Olympic Games in Beijing and issued a joint statement opposing what they considered attempts at Western-nation expansion through the North Atlantic Trade Organization. That argument has also been Putin's pretense for the Russia invasion.

Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said after the call that Xi underscored the "severe challenges" around the globe. 

"The Ukraine crisis is something we don't want to see," the agency reported Xi said. "Relevant events once again show that state-to-state relations cannot go to the point of confrontation. Conflict and confrontation are not in anyone's interests. Peace and security are the most treasured treasures of the international community," according to Fox News