China accepts that Biden won US election, Russia still holding out

China said Friday that it acknowledged President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the US election, leaving Russia as the only major power still to accept the result.

“We respect the American people’s choice and extend congratulations to Mr Biden and Ms Harris,” Wang Wenbin , a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry said Friday, according to the state-run Global Times news outlet.

“We also understand that the US election result will be decided in accordance with US laws and procedures.” 

Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris claimed victory on Saturday, leading to a flurry of congratulations from leaders around the world.

But anything from China, Russia, and North Korea was notably absent.

The Kremlin spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said on Monday that Russia had no congratulations for Biden, saying that it wanted to wait longer for an “official” result.

“There are ongoing legal processes,” Peskov said. “We believe the correct thing to do is wait for the official election result.”

The Trump campaign has filed a dozen lawsuits across five states, including the key battleground state of Pennsylvania, that seek to invalidate ballots they say were counted illegally or misappropriated.

However, Trump’s claims have struggled so far in the courts, and even if successful would likely not alter the outcome of the election.


Russian President Vladimir Putin is seen on June 30, 2020.

Alexei Druzhinin/TASS via Getty

Russia’s reaction will be closely watched, given its unusual relationship with the Trump administration.

Several reports published over the last two years have detailed how Russia was actively working to help Trump win the 2020 election, as the CIA concluded it did in 2016.

In late October, The New York Times reported that US intelligence agencies believed that Russia had made plans to interfere in the election by “exacerbating disputes around the results” if the vote tallies were close.

In 2019, The New York Times Magazine reported that the Trump administration tried to pressure the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to delete part of a classified report which said that Russia was trying to help him win the 2020 election.

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