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China voices opposition to THAAD deployment in report on NK sanctions

All News 11:26 July 22, 2016

SEOUL, July 22 (Yonhap) -- China has expressed its opposition to the move by South Korea and the United States to place an advanced missile defense system, suggesting that it could exacerbate tensions on the Korean Peninsula, a report submitted by Beijing to the U.N. Security Council (UNSC) showed Friday.

Earlier this month, Seoul and Washington said they have officially decided to deploy a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) battery in the Asian nation to cope with the ever-growing nuclear and missile threats from North Korea. Beijing has objected to the move, saying that it could undermine its strategic security interests.

"China urges all parties concerned to work in tandem to promote the holding of negotiations on denuclearizing the peninsula and on replacing the Korean armistice with a peace agreement, and to avoid actions that exacerbate tensions on the Korean peninsula," China said in the report on how it plans to implement sanctions on North Korea.

"China opposes the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile system on the peninsula," China added in the report, which has been posted on the U.N. Security Council website.

The report was known to have been submitted to the council on June 20, weeks before the THAAD deployment decision was announced. All member countries were required to submit their implementation plans to the UNSC within 90 days of the resolution's adoption. The deadline was June 2 (local time), though countries have leeway in regards to when they submit their reports.

China also emphasized its stance over the North's nuclear program that "dialogue" and "negotiations" are the way to go, saying that sanctions cannot produce a fundamental solution.

"Sanctions are not a goal, nor can Security Council resolutions fundamentally resolve the nuclear issue on the Korean peninsula. Dialogue and negotiation are the only correct path toward resolving that issue," it said.

Beijing reminded that the latest resolution 2270 adopted by the UNSC following the fourth nuclear test by the North earlier this year are not just opposing the North's nuclear weapons but also supporting the resumption of the long-halted six-party talks.

The six-party talks involving South and North Korea, the United States, China, Japan and Russia have been stalled since late 2008 when the North walked away from the negotiation table.

It voiced its commitment to achieving "durable" peace on the peninsula.

"China will continue to foster communication and coordination among all parties concerned and play a positive and constructive role in the early achievement of durable peace and security on the Korean peninsula," it said.

kokobj@yna.co.kr
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