After North Korea launches artillery close to South Korean islands, China calls for “calm and restraint” from all parties.

China’s close ties with North Korea were on show earlier this week when President Xi Jinping spoke by phone with his counterpart Kim Jong Un on New Year’s Day.

China called Friday for “restraint” from all sides after Seoul said North Korea had fired an artillery barrage near two South Korean islands.

“Under the current situation, we hope that all relevant parties maintain calm and restraint, refrain from taking actions that aggravate tensions, avoid further escalation of the situation, and create conditions for the resumption of meaningful dialogue,” foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told reporters.

Hours after the reported barrage, South Korean marines on the border island of Yeonpyeong conducted live-fire artillery drills, Yonhap news agency reported.

“We are paying close attention to developments and changes to the situation on the Korean Peninsula,” Wang added.

“Confrontations between relevant parties have intensified recently, and the situation on the peninsula continues to be tense.

“As a neighbour of the peninsula, China has always advocated maintaining peace and stability on the peninsula and resolving peninsula issues through dialogue and consultation.”

China’s close ties with North Korea were on show earlier this week when President Xi Jinping spoke by phone with his counterpart Kim Jong Un on New Year’s Day.

The conversation saw the two leaders declare 2024 as a “China-DPRK Friendship Year”, according to China’s state-run news agency Xinhua, using an acronym for North Korea’s official name.

“In recent years, Xi said, the traditional friendly cooperation between China and the DPRK has entered a new historical period with joint efforts,” Xinhua reported.

“Under the new situation in the new era, the (Communist Party of China) and the Chinese government have always viewed China-DPRK relations from a strategic and long-term perspective,” Xinhua added.

“It is China’s unwavering policy to maintain, consolidate and develop the long-standing friendly and cooperative relations between the two countries.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *