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N. Korea must stop playing nuclear games: Chinese media

All Headlines 21:06 May 13, 2010

By Kim Young-gyo

HONG KONG, May 13 (Yonhap) -- A Chinese newspaper urged North Korea on Thursday to stop playing nuclear games, a day after the reclusive state claimed to have succeeded in producing a nuclear fusion reaction.

"It must be borne in mind by North Korea that it is playing a dangerous game with Northeast Asian powers while relying on its considerably weak national strength," said the Global Times in Thursday's opinion section.

The North Korean claim came amid a deadlock in six-nation talks aimed at denuclearizing North Korea through aid. The talks group the Koreas, the U.S., Japan, Russia and host China.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il pledged to create "favorable conditions" for the resumption of the talks in his meeting with Chinese President Hu Jintao last week in Beijing.

In a rare move for Chinese state-controlled media, the Beijing-based newspaper openly criticized North Korea, calling it "proud."

"North Korea is dancing haphazardly along the nuclear tightrope, fraying the nerves of every world power. It is apparently proud, believing that it has played a dominant role," the Global Times said.

"But North Korea fails to realize that the most dangerous role is the one the country itself is playing."

A Peking University professor expected that the international standoff over the North's nuclear programs will continue.

"China will not pull the plug on its traditional relationship with North Korea, but Pyongyang has to do more -- internationally and domestically -- if it expects substantial Chinese assistance," said Zhu Feng, deputy director of the Center for International and Strategic Studies at Peking University.

"Chinese deference was eventually not at all traded for an expected ensuing return (of North Korea) to the course of denuclearization," Zhu said on a blog published online by MacArthur's Asia Security Initiative.


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