Europe’s security should stay in the hands of Europeans, Chinese President Xi Jinping has told German Chancellor Olaf Scholz . The two leaders discussed the war in Ukraine and other issues during a video call on Monday, with Xi urging European nations “to make every effort” to prevent the conflict from escalating and reaching “a point of no return”. He also emphasised the need for an independent European security framework, against the backdrop of the Ukraine crisis, saying China supports Europe in playing a positive role to promote peace talks and in the eventual establishment of “a balanced, effective and sustainable European security architecture”. “The security of Europe should be kept in the hands of Europeans themselves,” Xi told Scholz, according to the Chinese foreign ministry readout. “The European side needs to show historical responsibility and political wisdom, bear in mind the long-term stability of Europe, and promote a solution in a responsible manner.” Xi also said the China-Europe relationship “is not targeted at, subjugated to, or controlled by any third party”, which is “a strategic consensus that both sides must follow in the long run”. He reiterated China’s support for the “strategic autonomy” of the European Union, meaning nations take positions that are independent and not influenced by the United States. His remarks come as US President Joe Biden is seeking to shore up America’s alliances and partnerships in foreign policy. As Beijing faces criticism for refusing to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and opposing Western sanctions, Xi told Scholz that China always stands on the side of peace and has been working to promote peace and defuse tensions. The two leaders also discussed the bilateral relationship and China-EU ties, which have deteriorated over human rights issues. Xi said China and the EU had “far more common interests than differences” and needed to push for dialogue and cooperation amid changes in the international landscape. The Chinese president also expressed hope that Germany would support and take part in two new initiatives he has proposed – the Global Development Initiative and the Global Security Initiative. “The two sides should stand for true multilateralism, uphold international fairness and justice, defend the UN’s central role in international affairs, safeguard basic norms governing international relations, promote an open world economy, and make global development more balanced, coordinated and inclusive,” he said. According to the Chinese readout, Scholz told Xi that Germany was prepared to enhance communication and coordination with China on the multilateral front and promote the sound development of Europe-China relations. “Germany welcomes China’s commitment to expanding high-standard opening-up, which will bring more opportunities to Germany,” he was quoted as saying. Germany’s Scholz visits Japan, not China, on first Asia trip The leaders also agreed to cooperate in areas ranging from supply chain stability to trade and investment, climate change, Covid-19, healthcare, education and culture, according to the Chinese readout. Macroeconomic policy, financial stability, energy security, food security, new technologies including environmental protection were also among areas for potential cooperation. In a televised speech on Sunday to mark the 77th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, Scholz repeated his support for Ukraine, saying he was “deeply convinced [Vladimir] Putin will not win the war”. However, his coalition government was accused by Ukrainian diplomats of stalling over banning Russian energy and being slow to deliver military hardware aid, and a proposed trip to Kyiv by German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier was rejected by Ukraine last month.