Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Chinese President Hu Jintao in Beijing today, ostensibly to discuss Syria, Iran, bilateral trade, and energy cooperation.
The U.S. has pushed Russia to join international efforts for a political transition in Syria that would see Assad driven from power.
Putin, meanwhile, has sought to use Russia's burgeoning ties with Beijing as a counterweight to U.S. global predominance, and the sides have found common cause in rejecting Western calls for more open politics and respect for civil liberties.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin told reporters on June 5 that China and Russia both "oppose external intervention in the Syrian situation and oppose regime change by force."
Both countries also oppose further sanctions against Iran over its suspected drive to develop nuclear weapons.