News / Asia

China Increasingly Uneasy With N. Korea

China Increasingly Uneasy With North Koreai
X
May 10, 2013 7:30 PM
North Korea this week renewed its recent series of threats, saying there would be "immediate counteractions" should anything go awry with a series of joint military drills between the United States and South Korea. Much of Pyongyang's fiery rhetoric, however, has softened in recent weeks. VOA's Jeff Seldin takes a look at what may be persuading Pyongyang to, at least for now, change course.
North Korea this week renewed its recent series of threats, saying there would be "immediate counteractions" should anything go awry with a series of joint military drills between the United States and South Korea.  Much of Pyongyang's fiery rhetoric, however, has softened in recent weeks.

Warnings like that on North Korean state-run television seem more muted lately, and are coming less frequently.

Photos show North Korean leader Kim Jong Un talking with workers, not soldiers, at construction sites.

Possibly most telling, U.S. officials say two of Pyongyang's mid-range missiles recently were removed from imminent-launch status.  

Still, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying remains cautious.

"Current situation on the Korean peninsula is still highly complicated and sensitive. We hope that relevant parties can take actions that will help ease tension and bring peace and stability on the peninsula,'' said Hua.

But China itself may now be trying to wield more influence over Pyongyang, announcing the state-run Bank of China has closed key accounts with North Korea's main foreign exchange bank.

Scott Snyder, with the Council on Foreign Relations, said, "It is in my view a tactical adjustment whereby the Chinese are trying to signal to the North Koreans, as much as to anybody, that China's willing to get tough."

China's public rebuke was its first since North Korea set off a nuclear test in March, incurring a new round of sanctions.

What is unclear is just how much China is willing to push North Korea to get in line, and to what extent China is willing to align its aims with those of the United States.

China analyst Bonnie Glaser said it bears watching. "There is a greater opportunity than we have seen in the past to have a unified series of steps," she said.

Glaser said China is clearly growing impatient with what it sees as saber-rattling from young North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, though many in Beijing remain sympathetic to North Korea.

"I don't know that China has a long-term strategy about what it will do in cooperation with other nations or by itself if Kim Jong Un continues down this path," said Glaser.

With all the assistance China provides North Korea, there remain plenty of opportunities for more leverage to be applied should Beijing decide it is time to do that.

Jeff Seldin

Jeff works out of VOA’s Washington headquarters covering a wide variety of subjects, from the nature of the growing terror threat in Northern Africa to China’s crackdown on Tibet and the struggle over immigration reform in the United States. You can follow Jeff on Twitter at @jseldin or on Google Plus.

You May Like

Egypt's Suez Canal Dreams Tempered by Continued Unrest

Seen as a potential driver of recovery, Cairo’s plan to expand waterway had been raising hopes to give country much needed economic boost More

Ebola Maternity Ward in Sierra Leone First of its Kind

Country already had one of world's highest maternal mortality rates before Ebola arrived, virus has added even more complications to health care More

Malaysia Flight 370 Disappearance Ruled Accident

Aircraft disappeared on March 8, 2014; with ruling, families of 239 passengers and crew can now seek compensation from airline More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Davis K. Thanjan from: New York
May 10, 2013 8:20 PM
China has to worry more about nuclear state of DPRK than the US because DPRK is at its door step. If China want to restrain the war cry of the baby dictator Kim Jong Un, China should reign in at DPRK before it is too late. If it is too late for action, DPRK may direct the war rhetoric against China also. Is China waiting for the war cry against China for decisive action against DPRK?

In Response

by: guest2013 from: US
May 13, 2013 1:29 PM
china tighten the leash on their ally north korea in fear that north's nuclear provocation might end up a nuclear armed south korea and japan.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Groundbreaking Hand-Painted Documentary About Van Gogh in Productioni
X
George Putic
January 29, 2015 9:43 PM
The troubled life of the famous 19th century Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh has been told through many books and films, but never in the way a group of filmmakers now intends to do. "Loving Vincent " will be the first ever feature-length film made of animated hand-painted images, done in the style of the late artist. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Groundbreaking Hand-Painted Documentary About Van Gogh in Production

The troubled life of the famous 19th century Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh has been told through many books and films, but never in the way a group of filmmakers now intends to do. "Loving Vincent " will be the first ever feature-length film made of animated hand-painted images, done in the style of the late artist. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Rock-Consuming Organisms Alter Views of Life Processes

Scientists thought they knew much about how life works, until a discovery more than two decades ago challenged conventional beliefs. Scientists found that there are organisms that breathe rocks. And it is only recently that the scientific community is accepting that there are organisms that could get energy out of rocks. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports.
Video

Video Paris Attacks Highlight Global Weapons Black Market

As law enforcement officials piece together how the Paris and Belgian terror cells carried out their recent attacks, questions are being asked about how they obtained military grade assault weapons - which are illegal in the European Union. As VOA's Jeff Swicord reports, experts say there is a very active worldwide black market for these weapons, and criminals and terrorists are buying.
Video

Video Activists Accuse China of Targeting Religious Freedom

The U.S.-based Chinese religious rights group ChinaAid says 2014 was the worst year for religious freedom in China since the end of the Cultural Revolution. As Ye Fan reports, activists say Beijing has been tightening religious controls ever since Chinese leader Xi Jinping came to office. Hu Wei narrates.
Video

Video Super Bowl Ads Compete for Eyes on TV, Web

Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 1) is about more than just the NFL's American football championship and big parties to watch the game. Viewers also tune in for the world famous commercials that send Facebook and Twitter abuzz. Daniela Schrier reports on the social media rewards for America’s priciest advertising.
Video

Video Theologians Cast Doubt on Morality of Drone Strikes

In 2006, stirred by photos of U.S. soldiers mistreating Iraqi prisoners, a group of American faith leaders and academics launched the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. It played an important role in getting Congress to investigate, and the president to ban, torture. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Freedom on Decline Worldwide, Report Says

The state of global freedom declined for the ninth consecutive year in 2014, according to global watchdog Freedom House's annual report released Wednesday. VOA's William Gallo has more.
Video

Video MRI Seems to Help Diagnose Prostate Cancer, Preliminary Study Shows

Just as with mammography used to detect breast cancer, there's a lot of controversy about tests used to diagnose prostate cancer. Fortunately, a new study shows doctors may now have a more reliable way to diagnose prostate cancer for high risk patients. More from VOA's Carol Pearson.
Video

Video Smartphones About to Make Leap, Carry Basic Senses

Long-distance communication contains mostly sounds and pictures - for now. But scientists in Britain say they are close to creating additions for our smartphones that will make it possible to send taste, smell and even a basic touch. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Former Sudan 'Lost Boy' Becomes Chess Master in NYC

In the mid-1980’s, thousands of Sudanese boys escaped the country's civil war by walking for weeks, then months and finally for more than a year, up to 1,500 kilometers across three countries. The so-called Lost Boys of the Sudan had little time for games. But one of them later mastered the game of chess, and now teaches it to children in the New York area. VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York has his story.
Video

Video NASA Monitors Earth’s Vital Signs From Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, is wrapping up its busiest 12-month period in more than a decade, with three missions launched in 2014 and two this month, one in early January and the fifth scheduled for January 29. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the instruments being lifted into orbit are focused on Earth’s vital life support systems and how they are responding to a warmer planet.
Video

Video Crowded Republican Presidential Field Off to Early Start for 2016

It seems early, but the 2016 U.S. presidential election campaign is already heating up. Though no one has officially announced a candidacy, several potential Republican contenders have been busy speaking to conservative groups about making a White House run next year. Many of the possible contenders are critical of the Obama administration’s foreign policy record. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone reports.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid