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Xi Jinping and President Vladimir Putin of Russia Jointly Watch the Ice Hockey Friendly Match Between Chinese and Russian Youth Teams in Tianjin

On the evening of June 8, 2018, President Xi Jinping and President Vladimir Putin of Russia jointly watched the ice hockey friendly match between Chinese and Russian youth teams in Tianjin.

At the Tianjin Indoor Stadium, all seats were occupied and the atmosphere was warm. The red welcoming banners were hung above the stadium and the pictures of Chinese and Russian youth ice hockey players training and of players from both countries taking part in the Olympic Winter Games were successively displayed on the big screens of both sides.

At about 7:40 p.m., Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin jointly entered the stadium in a cheerful melody. More than 7,000 spectators at the stadium stood up and cheered, waving national flags of China and Russia to warmly welcome the arrival of the two heads of state. Young players of both countries lined up to express their welcome to the two heads of state when they walked into the ice hockey arena. Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin bumped fists with them in sequence. As the two heads of state stepped to the centre of the arena, young players gathered around them rapidly. Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin took photos and chatted warmly with them, encouraging them to unite with each other and strive to get ahead, to make friends via ice hockey, to play up their best, to improve their skills, and to become good friends and good companions through mutual learning and exchanges, so as to be successors to the cause of China-Russia friendly cooperation. Young players also presented Xi Jinping with a jersey of the Russian team and Vladimir Putin with that of the Chinese team.

Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin dropped the puck to start the game at the face-off spot in the ice center. After then, the national anthems of China and Russia were played. The spectators at the stadium gave rounds of thunderous applause, and the audience set off Mexican waves to cheer for the match.

Young players of both countries actively contended for the control of the puck, passed it and shot at goal, demonstrating great vigor and vitality. The two heads of state applauded for their splendid performance. Xi Jinping said to Vladimir Putin that the match between Chinese and Russian youth was exciting, which reflected the friendship between the youth of two countries. China is willing to promote exchanges and cooperation with Russia on events of sports such as ice hockey. Youth of both countries should strengthen communication to pass down the China-Russia good-neighborliness and friendliness from generation to generation. Vladimir Putin expressed that the performances of the youth of both countries were excellent on that day, and that there would be a promising future for China’s ice hockey. He hoped that such youth ice hockey could become a new bond for Russia-China friendship.

Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin jointly took a high-speed train from Beijing to Tianjin to attend the activity mentioned above. On the train, they witnessed the signing of bilateral cooperation documents on railways and cargo transportation between both countries. Ding Xuexiang, Li Hongzhong, Yang Jiechi, Wang Yi and others attended relevant activities.

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