Beijing today delivered an unusual criticism to North Korea over the killing of three Chinese citizens. North Korea is heavily dependent on ally China for financial and food aid.
Despite indications last week that it might take a harder line on North Korea over the North's apparent sinking of South Korea's Cheonan warship, China now appears unwilling to censure its Communist ally.
South Korean stocks continued to fall Tuesday on reports that North Korea was preparing for military action and had accused the South's Navy of trespassing.
South Korea on Monday froze funds for government exchanges with the North, a possible sign that Seoul is preparing for the results from an investigation into the March 26 Cheonan warship sinking that killed 46.