Xi Jinping Says ‘Won’t Forget’ US Bombing of Embassy in Belgrade

Just hours before appearing in Serbia, President Xi Jinping made a solemn commitment to never forget the NATO attack on the Chinese embassy in Belgrade. His goal throughout his swing across Europe was to fracture Brussels’ support for the US.

Xi told a Serbian periodical that twenty-five years ago, three Chinese journalists were killed when NATO struck the Chinese embassy in former Yugoslavia illegally. He also emphasized the importance of remembering. Xi claimed he would ensure that this sorrowful past does not repeat.

Three Chinese journalists were killed and twenty others injured when American planes unintentionally attacked the Chinese Embassy during the 1999 NATO bombing of Yugoslavia. The White House ultimately attributed mistakes to inaccurate maps. The incident led to anti-American demonstrations throughout China and solidified its distrust of US-dominated organizations like NATO.

According to the US, the planned target was the Serbian state armaments exporter’s offices, which are situated down the same street.

Serbia is one of three sites on Xi’s three-leg trip, which also covers France and Hungary. As European countries launch trade inquiries and join with America over worries about China’s potential threats to national security, Xi is attempting to persuade them that his massive economy cannot be ignored.

Western Europeans are becoming more concerned about Russian President Vladimir Putin’s actions in Ukraine, and Xi’s visit to Europe on the same day as Putin’s inauguration into a fifth term added to the political drama.

As a result of Xi’s criticism of NATO, it is suggested that he backed Russia during its invasion. In recent years, Chinese officials have brought up the Belgrade bombing on several occasions, showing that Beijing agrees with Russia that NATO aggression on Russia’s borders was the driving force for the conflict.

Despite human rights concerns and trade disputes straining Beijing’s relationship with Europe, Serbia’s ties with China have grown stronger under Xi. Serbia is not a member of the European Union. Xi claimed that the partnership between China and Serbia was born from the sacrifice of fellow citizens and will strengthen with time.