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Britain says China should encourage Russia to withdraw from Ukraine

FILE PHOTO: China's Xi plans Russia visit as soon as next week - sources

LONDON (Reuters) - Chinese President Xi Jinping should use a trip to Moscow to encourage President Vladimir Putin to withdraw Russian troops from Ukraine, a spokesperson for British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said on Friday.

"If China wants to play a genuine role in restoring sovereignty to Ukraine, then we would obviously welcome that," the spokesperson told reporters.

"We're clear that any peace deal which is not predicated on Ukraine's sovereignty and self determination is not a peace deal at all. So we will continue to call on China, as we have done before, to join other countries across the world in calling on Putin to withdraw his troops."

(Reporting by Alistair Smout, Editing by Kylie MacLellan)