CIA Director William Burns has stated that the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has become unsettled by the performance of Russia in its invasion of Ukraine. China, a country that has been increasingly aggressive against Taiwan, has been known to be a Putin ally and has been observing how the Russians have faired in their invasion of Ukraine, a war that has stretched on for three months. Burns said Moscow’s struggles would likely affect how Beijing will assess its commitment to annexing the island nation of Taiwan.

According to Burns, China is looking at the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, the largest war in Europe since World War II, to compare it to its own analysis of the costs of invading Taiwan, which they have repeatedly expressed to be their territory.

“Clearly, the Chinese leadership is trying to look carefully at what lessons they should draw from Ukraine about their own ambitions in Taiwan,” he said.

In the weeks ahead of Vladimir Putin’s so-called “special military operation” on Ukraine, Moscow and Beijing signed a 5,000 joint statement where the two nations declared a “no limits” partnership and denounced the expansion of Western influence.