February 05, 2015 09:46
Chinese Defense Minister Chang Wanquan has warned against indirect U.S. attempts to include South Korea in its missile defense system, which is widely believed to be aimed at containing Beijing.
The U.S. Forces Korea wants to deploy the so-called Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system, which forms the core of Washington's global missile defense.
Chang was speaking at a South Korea-China defense ministers meeting in Seoul on Wednesday.
But a ministry spokesman said Chang "virtually accepted" joint annual South Korea-U.S. military exercises, which regularly provoke the ire of North Korea.
This was the first time the Chinese defense chief has formally expressed his views on the THAAD system to his South Korean counterpart.
The matter was not originally on the agenda.
But Defense Minister Han Min-koo said the U.S. has made no decision or held formal talks with Seoul about the deployment, and even if it did it would not target China but only provide a defense against the North's ballistic missiles, the spokesman added.
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