News / Asia

Chinese, South Korean Leaders Meet in Beijing

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak (2nd L) walks with Chinese President Hu Jintao (L) as they inspect a guard of honor during an official welcoming ceremony in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing January 9, 2012.
South Korean President Lee Myung-bak (2nd L) walks with Chinese President Hu Jintao (L) as they inspect a guard of honor during an official welcoming ceremony in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing January 9, 2012.
Stephanie Ho

China is welcoming South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, for a three-day visit aimed at highlighting bilateral ties and discussing the future of the Korean peninsula following last month's death of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.

Chinese President Hu Jintao formally welcomed his South Korean counterpart to Beijing Monday. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin says China sees the South Korean leader's visit as important.

He says China and South Korea are important neighbors and have established what he described as "a strategic cooperative partnership". He also pointed out that China has become South Korea's top trading partner.

Cai Jian, the deputy of the Center for Korean Studies at Shanghai's Fudan University, says he thinks the timing of the visit is significant.

Cai says he thinks Sino-South Korean relations may benefit from North Korean leader Kim Jong Il's recent death because, in his words, “it will give the two countries more space for cooperation” on the common goal of maintaining stability on the Korean peninsula.

For decades, China has been one of North Korea's closest diplomatic allies. Cai says another reason for mutual political distrust between Beijing and Seoul has to do with the Chinese government's feeling that South Korea's alliance with the United States threatens China's interests.

He says China thinks South Korea seems to support and follow the United States more than it does China and tends to take the U.S. position in regional disputes. He says China sees this type of alliance as having the potential to disrupt the balance of power in the region.

The Chinese government spokesman says the two sides share an interest in maintaining peace and stability on the Korean peninsula and in speeding the resumption of the six-party talks aimed at persuading North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons.

China hosts the talks, which also include officials from the United States, North Korea, South Korea, Japan and Russia. The talks have been stalled since 2009, but the Chinese spokesman referred to “new momentum” for Beijing and Seoul to “enhance contact” with an ultimate aim of restarting them as soon as possible.

The South Korean leader is set to meet with China's top legislator Wu Bangguo and Premier Wen Jiabao, and attend a meeting with South Korean business leaders in China, before leaving Wednesday.

You May Like

Pakistan Among Developing Countries Hit Hard by Global Warming

Pakistani officials hope developed nations agree to scale back emissions, offer help in dealing with climate change

Video Speed, Social Media Shape Counterterrorism Probes

Speed is critical in effort to prevent subsequent attacks; demographics of extremists lend themselves to communicating, establishing profiles on digital platforms

Islamic State Oil Trade Seduces Friends, Foes Alike

Terrorist group rakes in up to $500 million a year in sales to customers such as Syrian government, US-supported rebels and Turkey

This forum has been closed.
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Social Media Aids Counter-Terrorism Investigationsi
Katherine Gypson
December 01, 2015 10:06 PM
In the aftermath of the Paris attacks, officials carried out waves of raids and arrests to break up terror cells. As VOA's Katherine Gypson reports, social media can be a key tool for investigators.

Video Social Media Aids Counter-Terrorism Investigations

In the aftermath of the Paris attacks, officials carried out waves of raids and arrests to break up terror cells. As VOA's Katherine Gypson reports, social media can be a key tool for investigators.

Video Russia Marks World AIDS Day With Grim News

While HIV infection rates have steadied or even declined in many European countries, the caseload has grown rapidly in Russia, as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow. Over half of the new infections were transmitted through injection drug use.

Video Pakistan Hit Hard by Global Warming

As world leaders meet in Paris to craft a new global agreement aimed at cutting climate-changing greenhouse-gas emissions, many developing countries are watching closely for the final results. While most developing nations contribute much less to global warming than developed countries, they often feel the effects to a disproportionate degree. As Saud Zafar reports from Karachi, one such nation is Pakistan. Aisha Khalid narrates his report.

Video With HIV, Can We Get to Zero?

The theme of this year's World AIDS Day is "Getting to Zero." The U.N. says new HIV infections have been reduced by 35 percent since 2000 and AIDS-related deaths are down by 42 percent since the peak in 2004. VOA's Carol Pearson takes a look at what it might take to actually have an AIDS-free generation.

Video Political Motives Seen Behind Cancelled Cambodian Water Festival

For the fourth time in the five years since more than 350 people were killed in a stampede at Cambodia’s annual water festival, authorities canceled the event this year. Officials blamed environmental reasons as the cause, but many see it as fallout from rising political tensions with a fresh wave of ruling party intimidation against the opposition. David Boyle and Kimlong Meng report from Phnom Penh.

Video African Circus Gives At-Risk Youth a 2nd Chance

Ethiopia hosted the first African Circus Arts Festival this past weekend with performers from seven different African countries. Most of the performers are youngsters coming form challenging backgrounds who say the circus gave them a second chance.

Video US Lawmakers Brace for End-of-Year Battles

U.S. lawmakers are returning to Washington for Congress’ final working weeks of the year. And, as VOA's Michael Bowman reports, a full slate of legislative business awaits them, from keeping the federal government open to resolving a battle with the White House over the admittance of Syrian refugees.

Video Taiwan Looks for Role in South China Sea Dispute

The Taiwanese government is one of several that claims territory in the hotly contested South China Sea, but Taipei has long been sidelined in the dispute, overshadowed by China. Now, as the Philippines challenges Beijing’s claims in an international court at The Hague, Taipei is looking to publicly assert its claims. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.

Video After Terrorist Attacks, Support for Refugees Fades

The terrorists who killed and injured almost 500 people around Paris this month are mostly French or Belgian nationals. But at least two apparently took advantage of Europe’s migrant crisis to sneak into the region. The discovery has hardened views about legitimate refugees, including those fleeing the same extremist violence that hit the French capital. Lisa Bryant has this report for VOA from the Paris suburb of Cergy-Pontoise

Video Syrian Refugees in US Express Concern for Those Left Behind

Syrian immigrants in the United States are concerned about the negative tide of public opinion and the politicians who want to block a U.S. plan to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees. Zlatica Hoke reports many Americans are fighting to dispel suspicions linking refugees to terrorists.

Video Thais Send Security Concerns Down the River

As Thailand takes in the annual Loy Krathong festival, many ponder the country’s future and security. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai.

Video Islamic State Unfazed by Losses in Iraq, Syria

Progress in the U.S.-led effort to beat Islamic State on its home turf in Iraq and Syria has led some to speculate the terror group may be growing desperate. But counterterror officials say that is not the case, and warn the recent spate of terror attacks is merely part of the group’s evolution. VOA National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more.

VOA Blogs