China joins France in urging Israel not to go ahead with Rafah offensive


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Xi Jinping, sensing a diplomatic opening, is stepping up China’s intervention in the Middle East crisis, issuing a joint statement with the French president, Emmanuel Macron, to urge Israel not to go ahead with an offensive in Rafah. The rare moment of Sino-European synergy is the latest effort by China to make its diplomatic mark in a region in which it has deep economic interests, but more shallow diplomatic moorings. Beijing’s primary initiative is to try to effect a reconciliation between the two main Palestinian factions, the secular Fatah and Islamist Hamas and it hosted talks between the two groups...