Beijing: Amid persisting Ukraine crisis, some countries have called on China to play a leadership role to mediate between Russia and Ukraine.

Amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine, China has found itself in a precarious position with its leaders attempting to maintain the growing ties with Moscow, while minimising any further fallout in the relationship with the Western countries.

The EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell suggested that China is more suitable than other powers to play such a role. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has urged China to use its influence to stop Russia's advances.

Moreover, China itself offered to mediate between Russia and Ukraine.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told senior European officials last month that China "firmly advocates respecting and safeguarding the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries which equally applies to Ukraine".

At the same time, Wang tempered his remarks, saying that, given five consecutive rounds of NATO's eastward expansion, "Russia's legitimate security demands should be taken seriously and properly addressed," France 24 reported.

"Beijing has been balancing its stance, but never losing sight of its own interests and principles in the process," said Zsuzsa Anna Ferenczy, a postdoctoral fellow and EU-China expert.

Some analysts say that Russia's invasion of Ukraine may give China an opportunity to increase its influence Indo Pacific and the Middle East. However, Beijing is likely to be prudent with any economic overtures.

According to a senior Chinese scholar, Russia's 'special military operation' against Ukraine has caused great controversy in China, with its supporters and opponents being divided into two implacably opposing sides.

Hu Wei, who is the vice-chairman of the Public Policy Research Centre of the Counsellor's Office of the State Council, said China cannot be tied to Putin and needs to be cut off as soon as possible.

"In the sense that an escalation of conflict between Russia and the West helps divert U.S. attention from China, China should rejoice with and even support Putin, but only if Russia does not fall," he argues.

Being in the same boat with Putin will impact China should he lose power, he added. According to Hu Wei, China should avoid playing both sides in the same boat, give up being neutral, and choose the mainstream position in the world.