Seoul Asks Beijing to Help with Security on Korean Peninsula

  • Lee Yong-soo, Pak Soo-chan

    August 10, 2022 12:20

    Foreign Minister Park Jin met his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Qingdao on Tuesday and asked him to help maintain peace and security on Korean Peninsula.
    Park is the first minister in the Yoon Suk-yeol government to visit China. The two apparently discussed a wide range of issues, including the U.S.' Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense battery stationed in South Korea, Seoul's participation in a U.S.-led semiconductor alliance and cross-straits tensions heightened by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's recent visit to Taiwan.
    "We must adhere to a win-win strategy and protect stable supply chains," Wang said, voicing displeasure at the U.S.' Chip 4 alliance and other polices to reduce dependence on China.
    Park said, "Peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula faces unprecedented threats. We ask China to play a constructive role so that North Korea will choose dialogue instead of provocations."
    Foreign Minister Park Jin shakes hands with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Qingdao, China on Tuesday. /News1
    But Wang rejected censure over Beijing's saber-rattling in the Taiwan Strait. "We must adhere to a policy of equality and mutual respect and avoid interfering in each other's internal affairs," he said. China considers Taiwan a breakaway province.
    On THAAD, Wang called on the South Korean government to adhere to the "three no's" promised by Yoon's predecessor Moon Jae-in -- no additional deployment of THAAD batteries, no South Korean integration into a U.S.-led regional missile defense system and no trilateral alliance with the U.S. and Japan.
    But Park said China should concentrate on achieving North Korean denuclearization, adding, "THAAD is directly related to [South] Korea's national security, and China must respect that."
    China's state-run Global Times said in an editorial that the THAAD issue is a "major hidden danger that cannot be avoided in China-South Korea ties," and urged the South not to accept a "knife handed by its 'friends.'"
    China worries that the battery's powerful radar could be used to spy on its military activities.
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