Beijing says vehicles were for civilian use, not covered by sanctions
BY: Bill Gertz
eptember 14, 2017 5:00 am
Chinese military support to North Korea’s missile programs included transfers of rocket transporters, according to a new report by a United Nations panel of experts.
The report by the expert panel of the UN Security Council identified Chinese-origin trucks shown in a military parade last April carrying China’s new KN-11 submarine-launched ballistic missile.
“The trucks carried the ‘Sinotruk’ logo on the fuel tank and shared some identical features with the Sinotruk Howo 6×6 series trucks shown at the 10 October 2015 military parade,” the report said.
It is the second significant transfer of strategic missile technology from China identified by the panel.
In June 2013 the panel revealed the sale by China in 2011 of six to eight transporter erector launchers, known as TELs, that are now part of North Korea’s first road-mobile intercontinental ballistic missile system, the KN-08.
China claimed the KN-08 TEL vehicles were sold as lumber haulers. However, analysts said the 16-wheel launchers are too wide for logging roads. The launchers are made by the Sanjiang Special Truck Co. of the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC).
An earlier UN report in April said Chinese electronic components were found in debris of a North Korean missile test that landed in the Sea of Japan in 2016.
The latest disclosure on Chinese military assistance to North Korea comes amid reports the regime of Kim Jong Un is rapidly developing long-range nuclear missiles while stepping up threats to fire them at American cities and territory.
Rep. Robert Pittenger (R., N.C.) said the report on Chinese support shows that China has not been a good faith partner to the United States on North Korea.
“We must continue to pressure the Chinese, via any means necessary, to ensure they correct their actions related to North Korea, human rights, illegal maritime claims, and a variety of other related national security concerns,” Pittenger said.
Rick Fisher, a military affairs analyst, said the Chinese assistance increased the threat to the United States.
“Let’s be clear, North Korea’s is able to wage surprise offensive nuclear strikes against the United States only because China has supplied the means for North Korea’s missiles to be mobile, to reach launch positions before the United States can strike them,” Fisher said.
“This is really is no less an outrage than Nikita Khrushchev’s supplying nuclear missiles to Fidel Castro’s Cuba,” he said. “Yet for over four years President Obama did not once publicly mention this Chinese outrage, and so far, neither has President Trump.”
Fisher, a senior fellow at the International Assessment and Strategy Center, said the report on Sinotruk vehicles carrying KN-11s provides new evidence of China’s covert role in assisting Pyongyang’s missile launch systems.
Other Chinese vehicles spotted with missiles in the April parade include what appeared to be a Sinotruk A7 tractor-trailer cab, seen carrying a new, unidentified North Korean medium-range missile. Mobile 300-millimeter precision-guided artillery rockets also were seen on the same Sinotruk vehicle as the KN-11. The artillery rockets were first paraded in 2015 and the Sinotruk carriers appeared upgraded in the April procession with a hardened grille.
The Chinese trucks were shown in videos and photos published by North Korean state media.
“Via Sinotruk, China is enabling North Korea to build larger tractor-trailer style TELs that in the future could perhaps transport multiple-warhead variants of its large, solid fuel ICBM,” said Fisher.
“Mobility will be crucial to the missions of North Korea’s new, large, solid-fuel ICBMs.”
Neither Sinotruk nor CASIC were included in recent sanctions announced by the Treasury Department imposed on 10 Chinese and Russian companies involved in illicit North Korean trade.
The UN report outlined some of the advances made by the North Koreans, including the first flight tests in February and July of new long-range missiles and new rocket engines, as well as the flight test of a Scud variant with a maneuvering warhead.
Maneuvering warheads are more difficult to track and shoot down with anti-missile interceptors.
The recent missile developments represent “a significant expansion and diversification of [North Korea] programs.”
“These new systems will allow the country to achieve greater range, responsiveness, reliability, and penetrating capabilities,” the report said.
The report said the second long-range Hwasong-14 ICBM tested on July 28 was “an improved version” of the missile tested on July 4.
The UN panel included a vague warning to China to stop its the missile-related transfers.
“The panel recalls and reaffirms its recommendation to member states on enhanced vigilance over the export of commercial vehicles that could be converted for military use,” the report said.
The UN also was urged to add the purchaser of the trucks, the Korea Daesong General Trading Corp., also known as the Korea Daesong Trading Co. No. 11, to be added to the list of sanctioned companies. A second company, Korea Kumsan Trading Corp., also was recommended for sanctions.
The report says the Chinese stated in response to UN inquiries that the missile carriers appeared similar to those made by the China National Heavy Duty Truck Group Co. (CNHTC) Ltd., also known as Sinotruk, that were exported to North Korea between 2010 and 2014.
According to the report, the Chinese defended the transfers as not prohibited under the Security Council embargo.
“Furthermore, in the sales contract, CHNTC explicitly requested the buyer to ensure the civilian use of the trucks,” the Chinese said.
China then claimed it could not confirm that the trucks seen in the parade, bearing the mark “Sinotruk” on the fuel tank, were produced by the Chinese companies because Beijing was not provided the vehicle identification numbers.
The report was published on Sept. 5, two days after Pyongyang detonated a large underground nuclear explosion. The report does not mention the nuclear test, North Korea’s sixth test blast.
The Security Council on Saturday voted to impose additional sanctions on North Korea, including a ban on Pyongyang’s largest export, coal.
However, the experts’ report said North Korea has easily evaded China’s restriction of coal purchases from North Korea.
North Korea “continued to violate sectoral sanctions through the export of almost all of the commodities prohibited in the [UN] resolutions, generating at least $270 million in revenue during the reporting period,” the report said.
After China suspended coal import in February, North Korea “has been rerouting coal to other member states including Malaysia and Vietnam, and has shipped coal through third countries,” the report said.
“The panel’s investigations reveal that the country is deliberately using indirect channels to export prohibited commodities, evading sanctions.”
To evade financial sanctions, Pyongyang stationed agents abroad that were able to conduct financial transactions for North Korean entities.
“Financial institutions in numerous member states wittingly and unwittingly have provided correspondent banking services to front companies and individuals of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea engaged in prohibited activities,” the report said.
China was not named as the member state guilty of facilitating banking services for the North Koreans.
The report notes that North Korea “has made significant technological progress” in advancing its weapons of mass of destruction despite sanctions.
“The country also continues to flout the arms embargo and robust financial and sectoral sanctions, showing that as the sanctions regime expands, so does the scope of evasion,” the report said.
“For the first time in the history of the sanctions regime against the country, the use of a chemical warfare agent was reported by Malaysia, which accused [North Korea] of using VX [nerve agent] in the February 2017 assassination of Kim Jong Nam, reported to be Kim Jong Un’s half-brother, in Kuala Lumpur.”
Source: Washington Free Beacon “China Sold Trucks Used With North Korean Missiles”
Note: This is Washington Free Beacon’s article I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the article’s views.
SCMP describes the hardship North Korean refugees suffer in China in its report “Trafficked North Korean ‘bride’ reveals her desperate flight from China” yesterday.
The report says, “According to Reuters, 385 North Koreans made the journey (to Thailand) in the first half of the year, compared with 535 last year.”
That was really quite a small number. At the beginning of this century, I often worked in Qingdao where there were quite a few North Korean immigrants. According to their gossips, there were at that time 200,000 to 300,000 North Korean immigrants in China. The exact number is a mystery as there was no official figure and lots of such immigrants were able to be registered as Chinese residents due to their Chinese origin, sympathy of Chinese rural officials, bribes, etc. According to some immigrants I met at that time, all their classmates back in North Korea had moved to China. If so, the number of immigrants must be enormous.
There were over 2 million people of Korean ethnic minority in China, but lots of North Korean immigrants had registered as people of Han (the major race in China) instead of Korean nationality. They spoke perfect Chinese and Korean languages. When asked whether they were Chinese or Koreans, they said that they were not clear themselves. Anyway, they preferred being Chinese and liked the freedom and better living standards in China at that time.
According to them, at the beginning of this century, crossing the border to immigrate to China was not difficult especially in winter when border rivers were frozen. If they dressed like Chinese people and spoke Chinese language well, no one would suspect that they were illegal immigrants. That was perhaps due to the good relations between China and North Korea at that time.
According to them lots of Chinese crossed the border to live with their North Korean relatives and friends when there was serious famine from 1959 to 1962 in China; therefore, it was only natural for North Koreans to cross the border to live with their Chinese relatives and friends when there was famine in North Korea.
However, things are different now, the starvation in North Korea may drive a flood of North Korean refugees into China that China is not able to accept as China has too large a population; therefore, China has tightened border control and will repatriate all illegal immigrants from North Korea. Moreover, it is difficult for illegal North Korean immigrants to find jobs in China as North Korea is now export labor to China through official channel.
The following are excerpts of my post “120,000 North Koreans to Work in China” on August 2, 2012:
Hong Kong’s Singtao Daily reports, “News about North Korea’s export of 120,000 workers to China appeared for the first time on Chinese Mainland media. The first part of them, about 30 in number, have already worked for nearly 6 months in a hotel at Jiansu’s Waxi Village, the richest village in China. They are mostly college graduates aged 20-odd, working in service trade with major job responsibilities of singing and dancing. Their monthly salary of about 6,000 yuan (US$942) was paid by their employer directly to North Korean government.” They themselves only get 150 yuan (US$23.55) pocket money per day. According to reports, they provide wonderful singing and dancing services but live a dull and mythic life.
“A person responsible for propaganda in Waxi Village confirmed that those girls were North Korea’s export of laborers to China. It is inappropriate to reveal their number and North Korea requires that no photographs or video recording shall be taken of nor press interview be made with them.
“Those North Korean girls are but the first batch of the large number of exported laborers. According to South Korean media, North Korea will send 120,000 workers to work in Dandong, Tumen and other areas in China. China has already made a plan to received lots of North Korean laborers.”
The North Korean girls’ major jobs are singing and dancing performance, but they also serve as waitresses when they do not give performance. They sing Korean and Chinese songs well with good voice comparable with hot Chinese and Korean stars.
The hotel and its customers are well satisfied with their services. Compared with rural girls employed from Anhui and other places, they are much better in their style of conversation, manners and appearance. According to the hotel, North Korean girls have made the hotel more attractive. Due to the reputation of their songs and dances, quite a few rich people came to enjoy their exotic performance. Local people also want those girls’ services when they hold wedding banquets.
I wonder whether those North Koreans are able to remain in China when China imposes UN sanctions against North Korea.
Comment by Chan Kai Yee on SCMP’s report, full text of which can be found at http://www.scmp.com/news/china/policies-politics/article/2110256/trafficked-north-korea-bride-one-woman-reveals-her.
As far back as in January 2012, China gave me the impression that it tried to build a pan-Asia community, which I called “China’s Greater Asia Co-prosperity Sphere in my post “CHINA’S GREATER ASIA CO-PROSPERITY SPHERE” on January 29, 2012. I used the term similar to Japan’s Greater East Asia Co-prosperity Sphere to make it easy to understand but failed to make clear distinction of China’s from Japan’s.
Japan’s was a term to beautify its aggression that had brought no co-prosperity but misery in the so called co-prosperity sphere but China’s is a true co-prosperity sphere that will enable China and the countries within the sphere to prosper through win-win cooperation. Anyway, to avoid confusion, I had better not use such a term; therefore, I no longer use the term later.
China was at a turning point by that time. For further economic growth to realize its dream to become too strong to be bullied by other countries, it needed a huge market, lots of natural resources and cheep labor. In order to greatly expand its domestic market, it has just established nationwide life and medical insurance safety nets and was building millions of subsidized housing in order to make its people save less and spend more. In addition, it plans to speed up urbanization and substantially increase workers’ income.
However, when labor became expensive, lots of China’s labor-intensive factories would be in trouble. They had to move to poor countries where there was a shortage of investment and lots of cheap labor. North Korea was precisely one of such countries.
China has been trying to export its Chinese model to North Korea for quite a long time. During his visit of North Korea in 2005, Chinese leader Hu Jintao spoke about the problems China had at a banquet Kim Jong-il gave in his honor. That was a clear sign that China was unwilling to give substantial aids free of charge. Obviously, Chinese aids have to be mutually beneficial. By reducing Chinese aids, Hu tried to make North Korea follow Chinese model to make North Korea prosperous.
If North Korea follows China’s example, it would establish Sino-North Korean joint ventures for China to utilize the natural resources and cheap labor there. There were prospects that North Korea would export lots of goods to China. That would make North Korea rich and greatly improve its people’s living standards. North Korea would in turn become a growing market for Chinese exports. North Korea’s Kim Dynasty, if followed the Chinese model, would become popular. That seemed the only way out for Kim Jong-un to maintain the survival of his dynasty.
The transformation of North Korea from poverty to prosperity would set a North Korean model that would be eagerly followed by China’s other neighbors. Then the vast and populous Asia will become sources of natural resources and cheap labor for China and a growing market for China while China will offer its huge market for those neighboring countries.
When I wrote the post in 2012, Kim Jong-il, the second generation monarch of North Korea’s Kim Dynasty, had visited China and decided to follow the Chinese model, but he soon died so that he had not really started the reform and opening up similar to China’s.
When his successor Kim Jong-un had just taken over, there was North Korean official news agency’s report that urges party organizations to prove their loyalty to Kim Jong-un by resolving the “burning” food problem. In addition, knowing well Kim Dynasty’s predicament, the regime’s three official newspapers’ joint New Year editorial even urges “the whole party, the entire army and all the people” to “become human bulwarks and human shields in defending Kim Jong-un.” Obviously, the Kim regime knew well that it would collapse if it failed to put an end to the famine and improve people’s livelihood.
Not long after Kim Jong-un took over, his brother Kim Jong-nam, the prince who has failed to succeed to the throne, predicted his brother Kim Jong-un’s failure to maintain Kim Dynasty’s survival. Knowing well the dire situation in North Korea, Kim Jong-nam believed that King Jong-un lacked the experience to fulfill the Herculean task of resolving the food problem and improving people’s living standards.
China’s experience, however, proves that it is very easy to resolve the food problem. Put an end to collective farming and divide farmland to farmers, there will soon be lots of food and other agricultural products to satisfy people’s needs.
However, it is very difficult for a communist country to switch to the capitalist road. In spite of Deng Xiaoping’s dominant power as China’s paramount leader, his reform and opening up, capitalist in nature, encountered serious resistance from communist conservatives. There were fierce debates between conservatives and reformists about the nature of the reform and opening up. i.e. whether the reform and opening up are socialist or capitalist in nature.
Deng certainly knew that his reform and opening up was capitalist in nature so that it was impossible for the reformists to convince the conservatives that they were socialist in nature; therefore, Deng resorted to the trick of delay. He told conservatives to wait for the results of his reform and opening up and believed that the satisfactory results would convince the conservatives.
However, the conservatives would not wait. They continued to attack the reform and succeeded in bringing down Hu Yaobang, the general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in charge of the reform at that time.
Hu’s successor Zhao Ziyang upset the conservatives by closing conservatives’ mouthpieces such as the prestigious Hongqi magazine in order to silence their attack against the reform and opening up. Powerful conservative elders were very much upset and tried hard to force Deng to remove Zhao as CCP General Secretary. As a result, Deng even wanted to make Zhao replace him as Chairman of the Central Military Commission to enable Zhao to have the supreme power to deal with the conservatives.
However, Zhao, as an experienced communist official, knew well in an oriental communist autocracy like China, the power did not lie in an official’s title. As CCP top official the general secretary, Zhao had no power while major CCP elders, though retired, remained very powerful. Soon the Tiananmen Incident provided the conservatives with the opportunity to remove Zhao and almost stopped the reform and opening up.
It was not until three years after the Incident that Deng used his dominant power as the paramount leader to restore the reform by his well-known Southern Tour. Later, Deng’s successors Jiang Zemin and Zhu Rongji convinced the conservatives with their achievements of Deng’s reform and developed the Three Represents to justify the pursuit of capitalism with Marxist theory. They have thus put an end to the debates but conservatism remains quite popular as proved by Bo Xilai’s Sing Red Campaign.
Kim Jong-un promised to enable his people to have enough food when he took over. As mentioned above, he was certainly able to achieve that if like China he put an end to his country’s collective farming and divided farmland to farmers. However, he could not carry through the reform due to conservatives’ serious resistance. Collective farming is regarded as a major factor of socialism while individual farming is regarded as capitalism. Kim as the leader of a socialist country should not pursue capitalism, conservatives argued.
In the industrial sector, China has set up quite a few joint ventures with North Korea, but Chinese joint venture partners were unable to manage their joint ventures the Chinese way due to the obstacles set by conservative North Korean officials.
If Kim Jong-un’s father Kim Jong-il had been alive, he would perhaps have been able to make North Korea follow Chinese model of reform and opening up as he had established sound powerbase to enable him to do so. Kim Jong-un, however, did not have enough time to establish a powerbase strong enough to overcome conservatives’ resistance.
Seeing that conservatives are much stronger than reformists in North Korea, Kim Jong-un switched to conservatives’ side to have their support for his Kim Dynasty. He killed and removed quite a few high-ranking pro-Beijing officials to please the conservatives but has thus upset China.
Kim was very clear that without reform he could not feed Korean people in order to win popular support for his Kim Dynasty. He was shrewd to focus on development of nuclear weapons and ICBMs to upset the US and make the US impose stringent sanctions on North Korea so that he could put the blame of food shortage, etc. on US sanctions.
He further upset China in doing so as China wants good relations with the US (I will explain the reasons in my later posts). China has reduced its aids to Kim to the minimum, but it had to provide North Korea with food and other necessities so that North Koreans would not flee into China in large number for their survival.
China has a long border with North Korea difficult to guard in winter when border rivers are frozen.
In fact, North Korea’s nuclear weapons are also a threat to China; therefore, Kim is now doing what China opposes.
Having entirely lost hope in North Korea, Chinese President Xi Jinping launched his Silk Road economic belt and 21st century maritime Silk Road (Belt and Road) initiative for the establishment of a pan-Asian community without North Korea.
Article by Chan Kai Yee
National Interest publishes Sandy Pho’s article “South Korea’s Greatest Fear (and It Isn’t a North Korean Invasion” on August 31 reflects South Korean people’s concerns on a rising China’s economic pressure due to the deployment of THAAD and fear that the US will not be able to protect South Korea as the US seems even unable to afford the costs of such protection.
South Korean people are unhappy about trump’s withdrawal from TPP, complaints about the U.S.-South Korea trade deficit, and calls for Seoul to pay more of the costs of having U.S. military forces in South Korea.
On the other hand, South Korea’s trade with China has risen to $300 billion greater than its trade with any others and it has substantial trade surplus with China. Moreover In 2015 Chinese travelers account for more than 50% of South Korea’s 17.2 million foreign tourists. Being big spenders, they spent nearly $13.7 billion there.
Now due to China’s opposition to the deployment of THAAD in South Korea, Chinese travelers has decreased nearly 40% and some Chinese people are boycotting South Korean products. Chinese government has created trouble for some South Korean companies involved in the deployment.
The article says, “South Koreans are frustrated over the lack of creative solutions from Washington and Beijing and deeply resent being used as a pawn in a U.S.-China regional competition.”
Indeed, it seems there is nothing South Korea can do to free itself from the predicament. It cannot survive without US nuclear and conventional military protection; therefore, there is limit to its leaders to be more active and independent in dealing with North Korea in spite of being told by their people to do so.
On the other hand, it cannot upset China because it will be in great trouble if China chooses to support North Korea.
The writer of the article wants his president Trump to do some Seoul searching. What is the use of Seoul searching? The US is declining and lacks the financial resources to perform its obligations to protect Europe, Japan, South Korea and many other countries.
Work hard to make the US rich and prosperous. That shall be the correct findings of US people’s Seoul searching.
As for South Korea, it really has lots of better alternatives than the deployment of THAAD. It can simply ask China what protection China can provide it if it does not deploy THAAD. It shall realize its own importance in East Asia. For the US it is an indispensable part of the US security triangle of US, Japan and South Korea in Asia. If it switches to China and Russia’s side and tells US troops to go home, the US will be in real trouble and will never dare to ask South Korea to pay for the costs of its military in South Korea.
Trump wants to reduce US financial burdens as the world’s only hegemon but cannot as he does not want to give up US world hegemony. Even if he wants, Congress and American people will not allow him. That is US weak point that Seoul can exploit.
China wants world leadership in win-win cooperation to benefit itself while benefiting others. Success of its free trade area (FTA) with South Korea has already brought lots of benefits to both countries. The FTA is also very important for China’s ambition to establish the Asia-Pacific Free Trade Area, of which South Korea constitutes an important part.
With such weak point and ambition in South Korean leader’s mind, he will has much room of maneuver.
Comment by Chan Kai Yee on National Interest’s article, full text of which can be viewed at http://nationalinterest.org/feature/south-koreas-greatest-fear-it-isnt-north-korean-invasion-22128.
(In this July 11 story, adds wording in paragraph 5 to show that Cui said Chinese imports from North Korea dropped in April and May.)
By David Brunnstrom
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – China’s ambassador to the United States has said reports of trade growth between his country and North Korea, in spite of international efforts to press Pyongyang to give up its nuclear and missile programs, give “a distorted picture.”
Last week U.S. President Donald Trump denounced China’s trade with North Korea, saying it had grown almost 40 percent in the first quarter, and cast doubt on whether Beijing was helping to counter the threat from North Korea.
Data released in April showed China’s trade with North Korea grew 37.4 percent year on year in the first quarter, in spite of a ban on coal imports China announced in February.
“This is a distorted picture,” China’s ambassador to the United States, Cui Tiankai, said in a speech to a Washington think tank on Monday.
Cui said bilateral trade declined in 2015 and 2016, and Chinese imports from North Korea dropped by 41 percent in April and 32 percent in May as a result of the coal import ban.
At the same time, Cui stressed that U.N. Security Council sanctions on North Korea did not constitute an embargo. “Normal trade … is not banned by these sanctions,” he said.
The Chinese embassy released a copy of Cui’s speech, originally delivered in an off-the-record setting, on Tuesday.
Cui said China backed further U.N. action against North Korea for violations of U.N. resolutions such as nuclear tests and launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs).
He did not though make clear whether China believed North Korea’s latest missile test last week, which the United States described as a first ICBM test, was of that type of missile.
Diplomats say the United States is aiming for a vote within weeks to strengthen U.N. sanctions on North Korea over the test, but Russia has objected to a Security Council condemnation of the launch as a U.S.-drafted statement labeled it an ICBM.
Cui said sanctions were necessary, but could not solve the North Korean problem alone. He repeated a call for Washington to back a Chinese “suspension for suspension” proposal under which North Korea would freeze weapons testing in return for suspension of U.S.-South Korean military exercises.
Washington says the exercises are needed to maintain defenses against North Korea and U.S. officials say Beijing could face U.S. economic and trade pressure unless it does more to rein in North Korea.
Washington is expected to press the issue when senior U.S. and Chinese officials meet on July 19 to discuss bilateral economic issues.
Reporting by David Brunnstrom; Editing by James Dalgleish
Source: Reuters “China envoy says North Korea trade growth picture ‘distorted’”
Note: This is Reuters’ report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.
China hit back on Tuesday in unusually strong terms at repeated calls from the United States to put more pressure on North Korea, urging a halt to what it called the “China responsibility theory”, and saying all parties needed to pull their weight.
U.S President Trump took a more conciliatory tone at a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Saturday, but he has expressed some impatience that China, with its close economic and diplomatic ties to Pyongyang, is not doing enough to rein in North Korea.
That feeling has become particularly acute since Pyongyang launched an intercontinental ballistic missile that some experts believe could have the range to reach Alaska, and parts of the U.S. West Coast.
Asked about calls from the United States, Japan and others for China to put more pressure on North Korea, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said it was not China ratcheting up tension and the key to a resolution did not lie with Beijing.
“Recently, certain people, talking about the Korean peninsula nuclear issue, have been exaggerating and giving prominence to the so-called ‘China responsibility theory,'” Geng told a daily news briefing, without naming any parties.
“I think this either shows lack of a full, correct knowledge of the issue, or there are ulterior motives for it, trying to shift responsibility,” he added.
China has been making unremitting efforts and has played a constructive role, but all parties have to meet each other half way, Geng said.
“Asking others to do work, but doing nothing themselves is not OK,” he added. “Being stabbed in the back is really not OK.”
While China has been angered by North Korea’s repeated nuclear and missile tests, it also blames the United States and South Korea for worsening tension with their military exercises.
China has been upset with the U.S. deployment of an advanced anti-missile system in South Korea too, which it says threatens its own security and will do nothing to ease tensions.
Additionally, Beijing has complained about Washington putting unilateral sanctions on Chinese companies and individuals for their dealings with North Korea.
Geng questioned how China’s efforts could bear fruit if, while it tried to put out the flames, others added oil to the fire, and if, while it enforced U.N. resolutions, others harmed its interests.
Everyone needed to accept their responsibilities to get the North Korea issue back on the correct track of a peaceful resolution through talks, he added.
“The ‘China responsibility theory’ on the peninsula nuclear issue can stop,” Geng said.
(Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)
Source: Reuters “China says ‘China responsibility theory’ on North Korea has to stop”
Note: This is Reuters’ report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.
By Ben Blanchard | BEIJING Mon Jul 10, 2017 | 9:23am EDT
From U.S. anger over inaction on North Korea to a festering border dispute with India and the ailing Chinese Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo, last week’s G20 summit was strewn with minefields for China’s President Xi Jinping.
By chance or by strategy, Xi and his officials picked their way through unscathed.
Beijing is ultra-sensitive about Xi’s image and ensuring he gets the respect it sees as his due as leader of an emerging superpower, especially when traveling to Western countries where it cannot so tightly control the public narrative.
Diplomatic sources in Beijing, speaking ahead of Xi’s trip to the G20 gathering in the German city of Hamburg, said Chinese officials had in private expressed nervousness that he could be asked awkward questions about North Korea, or the cancer-struck Liu, jailed for 11 years in 2009 for “inciting subversion of state power”.
In the end it was U.S. President Donald Trump’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, amid accusations Russia interfered in the U.S. election, and Trump’s refusal to return to the Paris climate agreement that dominated the limelight.
Xi, by contrast, avoided controversy in his bilateral meetings and reaffirmed China’s commitment to the Paris deal and to an open global economy, in what the official China Daily called the “burnishing of (his) reputation”.
“Nobody talked about the South China Sea. No one talked about trade. Everyone was happy with Xi. I think he played this well,” said Ulrich Speck, senior fellow at the Elcano Royal Institute in Brussels.
“All eyes were on Trump and Putin. But the fact that there was no U.S.-China clash was at least as important. Xi stayed out of the alpha-male fight. China presented itself as a partner to Europe.”
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Xi “made it clear that the G20 should adhere to taking the path of open development and mutual benefit leading to all-win results, support a multilateral trade mechanism, and promote international trade and investment”.
“China was in a good place at G20, with reasonable policies,” said Jin Canrong of the School of International Studies at the Renmin University of China, who has advised the government on diplomatic matters.
“So President Xi was comfortable and positive there.”
DON’T MENTION TAIWAN
Potentially the biggest test was Xi’s meeting with Trump, who in the run-up to Hamburg had voiced frustration over China’s inability to rein in its troublesome erstwhile ally, North Korea.
In the event, Trump returned to the conciliatory tone struck at their first meeting in April, telling the Chinese leader it was “an honor to have you as a friend” and he appreciated actions Xi had already taken to try to dissuade North Korea from pursuing nuclear weapons.
Influential Chinese state-run tabloid the Global Times said in an editorial on Monday that the Xi-Trump meeting had defied “the naysayers in the West”.
“Beijing and Washington saw friction on issues including Taiwan and the South China Sea ahead of the meeting, and there was speculation from Western public opinion that the China-U.S. ‘honeymoon’ had come to an end. But the Xi-Trump meeting repudiates such speculation,” the paper said.
Speaking to reporters later on Air Force One, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the Trump-Xi meeting lasted more than an hour-and-a-half, and would have gone on longer had they not had to leave for other engagements.
Ruan Zongze, a former Chinese diplomat now with the China Institute of International Studies, a think-tank affiliated with the Foreign Ministry, said Xi was much more upbeat than when he spoke to Trump a few days ahead of G20 and mentioned certain unnamed “negative factors” in their relationship.
“Even on trade Trump underscored that he wants cooperation,” Ruan said.
China’s biggest concern had been U.S. policy toward self-ruled Taiwan, after the Trump administration approved a $1.42 billion arms package for Taiwan, claimed by China as its own.
Neither government mentioned Taiwan in their respective accounts of their G20 meeting.
Chinese officials were at pains to point out their good relations with the new administration in Washington.
Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao told reporters in Hamburg that the Chinese and U.S. teams dealing the bilateral financial relationship clearly understood that both would be hurt by fighting with each other.
“Our strength is communicating every morning and every evening. This is unprecedented,” Zhu said.
NO DRAMA, FOR NOW…
On India, where China has over the past few weeks accused New Delhi of provocation by sending troops across the border in a disputed region, Xi avoided drama by not having a formal bilateral meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, though India’s foreign ministry said they did speak.
Even on Liu Xiaobo, Xi avoided being put on the spot, with China on Saturday allowing a U.S. and German doctor to meet him at his hospital in northeastern China.
Still, the faultlines remain in the tricky China-United States relationship.
China may respond more assertively if, for example, more Chinese entities are sanctioned by the United States over North Korea or Trump raises barriers to Chinese goods as he has frequently threatened, said a senior Beijing-based Western diplomat.
“China has been restrained so far in reacting to Trump, but that is unlikely to last,” said the diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Things are gearing up to be a summer of drama between China and the United States.”
(Additional reporting by Gao Liangping in Beijing, Roberta Rampton in Washington and Noah Barkin in Hamburg; Editing by Alex Richardson)
Source: Reuters “Quiet success for China at G20 as Xi avoids drama and spotlight”
Note: This is Reuters’ report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.