China's special envoy to Syria, Xie Xiaoyan, speaks to reporters in Damascus in April. Reuters

As the world’s collective stomach churns at the horrors surrounding the Syrian city of Aleppo and the Middle Eastern nation’s seemingly ceaseless civil mark, much of the attention has centered around two of the world’s superpowers with troops on the ground and fighter planes in the air: the U.S. and Russia.

However, as Russia and the U.S. continue jockeying for positions of power in war-torn Syria, the world’s other superpower, China, has spent much of this year pushing for negotiations that would help embattled President Bashar Assad. And in the last week, China has showed it stands with Russia and not the U.S. in its support of Assad’s government.

Most recently, China reaffirmed its hope to aid in “humanitarian operations” in Aleppo, Russian state-run site Sputnik International reported Monday. China’s special envoy to Syria, Xie Xiaoyan, reportedly visited Damascus, Syria’s capital, to speak with officials from both the Syrian government and its opposition in the civil war. He sat down with Syrian Deputy Prime Minister Walid al-Muallem and others to discuss China’s role going forward.

China also joined with Russia in vetoing a draft resolution presented at United Nations Security council last week that called for a seven-day cease-fire in Aleppo, BBC New reported. The resolution said the ceasefire would allow aid workers to reach trapped civilians and was backed by the 11 other members of the Security Council.

"China has expressed repeatedly that the issue can only be resolved through political settlement and that military means will lead nowhere," Special envoy to Syria Xie Xiaoyuan told reporters in Beijing in November. "We call on the United States and Russia to make efforts to resume their consultation on the cease-fire."

China, he added, could be a "widely valued and trusted" player in the peace deal.