May 26, 2010 09:18
China has urged North Korea to restrain itself over sanctions from South Korea, a senior Chinese official has told South Korean government officials. Beijing reminded Pyongyang that "peace and stability" are vital for the Korean Peninsula after an investigation implicated the North in the sinking of the South Korean Navy corvette Cheonan.
China's special envoy for Korean Peninsula affairs Wu Dawei, who is on a visit to Seoul, met Foreign Minister Yu Myung-hwan and other officials and told them of the warning.
A government official said China "reiterated the importance of stability and peace on the Korean Peninsula and delivered the same message to the North," which is frantically rattling the saber.
"The request could be a warning that Beijing may turn its back on Pyongyang if it should launch further provocations," a diplomatic source said.
Wu was quoted as telling Yu that Beijing "seriously reviewed" the findings of the international investigation. But an official added China's position over the sinking is still unclear. "The Chinese government hasn't made its position clear yet over whether it acknowledges the North's wrongdoings or not," he said.
Wu reportedly made no comment about South Korean sanctions against the North and its decision to submit a motion to the UN Security Council. "I got the impression that we'll have to wait a bit longer until China makes its position clear," the official added.
Meanwhile, the chief South Korean nuclear negotiator Wi Sung-lac, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Kurt Campbell, and Akitaka Saiki, a director-general for Asia at the Japanese Foreign Ministry, meet in Seoul on Wednesday morning to discuss submitting a motion to the UNSC and persuading China to come on side.
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