Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping and their friend, praised each other’s friendship amid growing tensions with international forces.

The world leaders held a phone call amid increasing criticism from the West, just days after G7 foreign ministers discussed Moscow’s sabre-rattling against Ukraine and Beijing’s crackdowns in Hong Kong and Xinjiang.

Putin spoke highly of Russia’s “model” relations with China, and said he will attend the Beijing Winter Olympics. 

After the conference, the Kremlin stated: “Both declared that the relationship reached an unprecedented high point.”

Putin called Xi his dear friend’ and said, ‘In February, we will finally have the opportunity to meet in person’ in Beijing.  

Vladimir Putin (pictured during the call) and Xi Jinping have vowed to 'safeguard both sides' security and interests' as the pair hailed their friendship

Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin were pictured together during the conference call. They pledged to’safeguard each side’s security and interests, as they praised their friendship

The United States, Britain, Canada and Australia are not sending political representatives to the Olympics

Australia, Canada, Britain, and Canada are not sending representatives to the Olympics.

Militants of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic take part in shooting drills at a range on the outskirts of Donetsk

Donetsk People’s Republic militia members participate in firing drills at the range outside Donetsk

Xi reported that China’s relations with Russia have beaten all sorts of stern test and they are now showing renewed dynamism.

A Chinese foreign ministry statement said that he had also accused “international forces” of interfering in China or Russia for democracy and of ‘grossly trompling’ against international law.

According to the statement, “China and Russia should develop more joint actions in order to effectively protect both their security interests and security,”

Australia, Canada (Britain), Canada (US) and Australia will not send any representatives to the Olympics because of China’s abuse of Uyghurs, and other predominantly Muslim minorities, in Xinjiang.

Moscow and Beijing denounced the diplomatic boycott. Putin, on Wednesday, stated that the leaders of both countries opposed any attempt to politicise the Olympic movement and sport. Russia has often criticised the West for this.

Russia was found guilty of using a state-backed anti-doping program at Sochi’s 2014 Winter Games. It was also banned from all international competitions.

The talks also came after both Russia and China were pointedly left out of US President Joe Biden's democracy summit last week

These talks were also held after China and Russia were omitted from the US President Joe Biden’s democracies summit last week

If they prove that their doping records are clean, Russian athletes can compete as neutrals. 

Except when invited by the heads of states of host countries, Russian officials and Putin cannot attend international competitions. Putin was invited to the meeting by Xi.

China and Russia both saw their relationships with Western countries deteriorate over the past years, and they have tried to create a stronger front. 

On Wednesday, Putin told Xi that ‘a new model of cooperation has been formed between our countries’ that includes a ‘determination to turn our common border into a belt of eternal peace and good-neighbourliness’.

The Russian leader stated that he considered these relationships to be an example of inter-state cooperation for the 21st Century.

Russia has staged huge live-firing drills with more than 1,000 tank troops in a region close to the Ukraine border as Russian President Vladimir Putin continues to stoke fears that Moscow will invade Kiev

Russia staged massive live-firing drills in an area close to Ukraine’s border with over 1,000 tanks troops as Russian President Vladimir Putin continued to inflame fears of Moscow invading Kiev

Yury Ushakov, Kremlin’s most senior foreign policy advisor, stated that the 90-minute conversation between the two great friendly countries lasted’very positively’. 

Since weeks Russia has been accused by the US and its allies of invading its ex Soviet neighbour Ukraine. The US warned that there would be massive sanctions against Russia if Putin attempted to attack.

Russian troops number in the thousands near Ukraine. The West accused Russia of supporting pro-Moscow separatists.

Russia refutes these allegations and blames West for inflaming tensions.

Putin spoke on Tuesday to the leaders of France, Finland and the United States. He stated that he wants security negotiations with NATO and the United States to start immediately. 

Putin said to Sauli Niinisto, the Finnish president that he would ‘immediately initiate negotiations’ to “develop international legal safeguards for the security and stability of the country,” the Kremlin read out of the conversation. 

Russia staged ground battle exercises some 30 miles from the frontier, a move which will do nothing to calm fears over his intentions. Video footage and pictures show the drills held by the country's southern military district at Kadamovsky firing range in Rostov region

Russia held ground battle exercises 30 miles south of the frontier. It is a step that will not ease fears about Russia’s intentions. Pictures and video footage show drills at Russia’s Kadamovsky firing site in Rostov.

The Kremlin said Russia’s demands included stopping NATO from expanding east and the deployment of weapons in neighbouring states, including Ukraine. 

Putin accused Ukraine’s leadership of using increasingly heavy weapons and drones against pro-Russian rebels in the separatist east. 

Moscow held large live-firing drills, with over 1000 tank soldiers in a area close to Ukraine’s border. Putin is continuing to incite fears about Russia’s invasion of its neighbor within the next few weeks.   

Putin has denied Russia plans to seize territory from Ukraine and has accused Britain and its allies of ‘demonising’ his country.   

Video footage and pictures show the drills held by the country's southern military district at Kadamovsky firing range in Rostov region

The drills at Kadamovsky firing site in Rostov are captured on video and photos

The Kremlin’s strongman, however, is looking to China for support in Europe. He will also discuss the future ‘cooperation priorities.  

The new footage of Russia’s ground combat exercises at 30 miles from frontier showed it. This move will be no help in calmening fears about Putin’s intentions.   

Video of drills at Kadamovsky firing site in Rostov, the southern military region. 

Boris Johnson, British Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, called Putin on Monday to express his concern about Russian military building-up in Ukraine. He also warned him of the’serious consequences” that could follow in the case of invasion. 

US intelligence officials believe that up to 175,000 Russian troops might launch an attack in early next year. With troops, tanks and artillery already gathering at the Ukrainian border, they could be as high as 175,000.