Since Russia invaded his country, Volodymyr Zelensky urged China to hold direct talks with him.

Zelensky told the South China Morning Post that the pair hadn't spoken in a year. He said the Ukrainian side had asked for a conversation but hadn't received a reply. He said that a dialog would be useful.

The leader of the world's second largest economy has refused to condemn Russia's war in Ukraine and declared a "no limits" friendship with Putin weeks before the invasion. The Russian leader called the Chinese leader on his birthday after they spoke within days of the war starting.

The relationship between China and Ukraine has been limited to lower level diplomatic exchanges.

At a news conference in Beijing on Thursday, China's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said China had kept in touch with all relevant parties. She said that China andUkraine communicate through diplomatic channels.

In March, Beijing voted against a United Nations court order for Moscow to immediately suspend its military operations, refused to join a US-led sanctions campaign to ostracize Putin's regime, and framed Washington as the "culprit" of the Soviet Union.

Zelensky said there was still room for China to help end the conflict.

He told the Post that his countrymen shared fundamental values with the Chinese and that China could put the Russian Federation in a place.

He said that everyone loves their children. People want to live in peace.

With help from Colum Murphy.

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