North Korea crisis: China has NO reason to stop nuclear stand-off

Saturday, December 2, 2017
By Paul Martin

EXCLUSIVE: CHINA has no reason to intervene in the North Korea crisis as tensions with the United States worsen, an academic has warned.

Sat, Dec 2, 2017

Professor Steve Tsang, the director of the China Institute at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), said China has no reason to get involved in resolving the stand-off between US leader Donald Trump and dictator Kim Jong-un.

China has come under increasing pressure to intervene as North Korea says it has developed a weapon capable of striking the mainland US.

US President Donald Trump has urged Beijing to exert pressure on North Korea by slapping the rogue state with sanctions.

China, North Korea’s only ally, has issued a number of economic sanctions but as tensions escalate on the Korean peninsula it is unclear how far Beijing will go to contain the crisis.

Prof Tsang told “Chinese leader Xi Jinping has no incentive to do it. The Chinese policy is simply to contain the problem over North Korea, not to resolve it.

“But why would they want to do that? How would it look within China if they Chinese were to cripple the North Korean economy and bring them to heel and bow to the Americans then the Communist party would be seen to have done the dirty on behalf of the United States.

“Then you raise the question of the whole legitimacy of the Communist party within China and Xi Jinping’s policy is to make China great again by putting China first.

“To be fair, China does not like the current situation. They would have preferred the North Koreans not to have developed the nuclear weapons and the missile delivery capacity which potentially destabilised the region.

“But that’s does not mean they want to do something about it, because the biggest problem the North Koreans are posing are for the Americans.”

In fact, China may actually be content with the situation as the current sabre-rattling reflects on the problems in US foreign policy over the country, according to Prof Tsang.

Prof Tsang said: “Particularly with this North Korean misbehaviour, it is demonstrating the incompetence and failure of American foreign policy for 20 years. We’re not talking about a failure of Trump – a failure of American policy towards North Korea over something like 20 years.”

Tensions across the entire region have worsening in recent months as Kim has been determined to push ahead with his missile and nuclear programmes despite worldwide condemnation and UN sanctions with the communist leader also engaged in a war of words and threats with US Republican leader Trump with both sides riling the other.

Just days ago the US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson called on China to do more to stop North Korea in its objectives.

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