One of China’s top diplomats warned Israel last week not to allow US pressure to damage its relations with Beijing, senior Israeli Foreign Ministry officials with direct knowledge of the issue told Barak Ravid of Axios on Wednesday.

The message from Liu Jianchao, who heads the Chinese Communist Party’s international affairs department, to Israeli Ambassador to Beijing Irit Ben-Abba, was the most unequivocal and direct message Israel has received from Beijing about the US-Israel-China triangle, according to the report.

The meeting last Wednesday was their first since Liu assumed his influential new ministerial-level role.

Israeli officials told Ravid that Liu emphasized the importance of bilateral relations, particularly for cooperation on technology.

Israel and China have clashed in the past over the Palestinian issue, as China recognizes a Palestinian state and consistently backs the Palestinians at the UN.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has publicly expressed his support for a “two-state solution” to the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

In 2013, Xi presented a four-point proposal to end the Israeli-PA conflict and establish an independent Palestinian state as part of China’s desire to play a greater role in the Middle East in general and in the Israel-PA peace process in particular.

Liu said in last week’s meeting that despite those differences, there is no conflict between China and Israel, but rather long-term shared interests.

He also said the Chinese people understand the pain of the Jewish people because the Chinese had been persecuted by the West.

At that point, according to Ravid, Liu brought the conversation around to the strains in the US-China relationship. He said that while China understands the special relationship between Israel and the US, it is nevertheless closely following Israel’s policies toward China.

“This is a critical test point for the relations between China and Israel,” Liu said, according to the Israeli officials, adding that he hopes Israel won’t compromise the positive future of Israel-China relations by aligning itself with US policy toward Beijing.

Liu specifically urged Israel not to get “dragged” into the US position that China is committing genocide in Xinjiang. Under US pressure, Israel signed a declaration at the UN Human Rights Council in June denouncing China’s actions there.

Any claims of human rights abuses against China are baseless and insulting to the Chinese people, Liu argued, claiming that China has not “fired a shot” in 40 years while the US has waged war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

According to Ravid’s report, the Israeli ambassador told the senior Chinese officials that Israel has an independent foreign policy — including toward China — but stressed that China’s actions in the UN on the Palestinian issue did not help relations.

Ben-Abba also said Israel expects that no third party will influence Chinese policy toward Israel.

A Chinese government spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment