China's decision to join international talks in Saudi Arabia over the weekend seeking to end Russia's war in Ukraine signals possible shifts in Beijing's approach but not a U-turn in its support for Moscow, analysts say.

While Beijing declined to join earlier talks in NATO member Denmark, analysts said it feels far more comfortable joining the effort in Saudi Arabia, even if Russia is not present and Ukraine is pushing its own plan.

China has refused to condemn Moscow for the invasion it launched in February 2022 but has offered its own peace plan and Beijing appears to be confronting some hard realities as the conflict drags on.