China blames North Korea for killing three of its citizens
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.
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China has been in the hot-seat over its cozy relations with Pyongyang, after declining to join its Asian neighbors and the West in condemning North Korea for the sinking of the Cheonan warship.Skip to next paragraph
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A multinational probe concluded last month that a North Korean torpedo sank the South Korean ship. President Lee Myung-bak has not minced words as he has sought to bring China around to the South Korean view, telling Premier Wen Jiabao bluntly that “China needs to play an active role in making North Korea admit its wrongdoing,” as The Christian Science Monitor reported.
AFP reported Tuesday that South Korea would not seek further sanctions against North Korea at the United Nations, but would ask the UN Security Council to take unspecified "measures" against Pyongyang over the Cheonan incident.
Analysts at a forum held by the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., last month said that China is wary of taking a harder line with its neighbor because of its desire for regional stability and its fear of a wave of North Korean refugees in the event of a crisis.
"China harbors numerous suspicions about South Korean and US intentions toward the North," CSIS analysts wrote in a report, and "instability in North Korea, whether triggered by internal or external forces, would quickly affect the stability, prosperity and development of China's northeastern provinces."
North Korea is heavily reliant on China for food and financial aid. “Without Chinese aid North Korea cannot survive,” Chen Fengjun, a North Korea expert at Peking University’s School of International Studies, told the Monitor last month during Kim Jong-il's secret visit to China.
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