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

Multimedia In US, Decision Expected Soon in Racially Charged Case

Missouri town, many Americans on edge over whether jurors will indict white police officer in August shooting death of unarmed black teen More

Corruption Fighters Want More From World’s Strongest Nations

Anti-corruption activists say final communique fell short of expectations and failed to fully address systemic problems More

Philippines Leery of Development on Reef Reclamation in S. China Sea

Chinese land reclamation projects in area have been ongoing for years, but new satellite imagery reportedly shows China’s massive construction project 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.
Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Faminei
X
Daniel Schearf
November 23, 2014 4:32 PM
During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video Law Enforcement, Activists in Ferguson Agree to Keep Peace

Authorities in Ferguson, Missouri, say they have agreed with protest leaders to maintain peace when a grand jury reaches its decision on whether to indict a white police officer in the shooting death of a black teenager. Ferguson, a suburb of St. Louis, has been the scene of intermittent violence since the August 9 shooting intensified long-simmering antagonism between the police and the African-American community. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Gay Evangelicals Argue That Bible Does Not Condemn Homosexuality

More than 30 U.S. states now recognize same-sex marriages, and an increasing number of mainline American churches are blessing them. But evangelical church members- which account for around 30 percent of the U.S. adult population - believe the Bible unequivocally condemns homosexuality. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender evangelicals are coming out. Backed by a prominent evangelical scholar, they argue that the traditional reading of the bible is wrong.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid