Seeking calm in Koreas, US looks to China

2013-04-13 15:35
US Secretary of State John Kerry (Picture: AP)

US Secretary of State John Kerry (Picture: AP)

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Beijing - As North Korea prepares a potential missile test and issues threats almost daily, the Obama administration is hoping yet again that China can force its unruly neighbour to stand down.

It's a strategy that has produced uneven results over decades of American diplomacy, during which Pyongyang has developed and tested nuclear weapons and repeatedly imperiled peace on the Korean peninsula.

But with only the counterthreat of overwhelming force to offer the North Koreans, the US has little choice but to rely on Beijing to de-escalate tensions in a peaceful manner.

The question of how Washington can persuade Beijing to exert real pressure on Korean leader Kim Jong Un's unpredictable regime is front and center as US Secretary of State John Kerry meets with Chinese leaders in Beijing on Saturday.

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