SEOUL, July 15 (Yonhap) -- North Korea on Wednesday lashed out at U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for his recent anti-China remarks, warning against interfering with affairs of other countries and "muddling up" public opinion.
Earlier this week, Pompeo said that China's maritime claims to resources in the South China Sea are "unlawful" and criticized the Communist Party of China (CPC) for bullying countries in the region.
His remarks drew strong rebuke from Beijing, which marked the latest in a series of recent clashes that have deepened a rivalry between the world's two most powerful countries.
"It is an extremely sinister act that a non-Asian country across the ocean, not being content with its reckless remarks over the issue of the South China Sea, has hurled abuses at the CPC," an unnamed spokesperson of the North's foreign ministry said in an interview carried by the Korean Central News Agency.
"If we have close examination into the recent remarks thrown by Pompeo over China, we could easily know what his intentions are. Pompeo is outrageously deriding the CPC," the official added. "Pompeo should not muddle up the public opinion and make absurd remarks while interfering in other's business whenever he pleases."
The spokesperson said Pompeo's attacks on the CPC are to undermine people's trust in the party, tarnish its "international prestige" and "overpower China with continued harassment."
Tensions between the U.S. and China have continued to mount recently, as the two sides have been at odds over a series of issues, including the origin of the coronavirus pandemic and civil liberties in Hong Kong. North Korea has recently voiced its strong support for China on such issues, siding with its longtime ally and largest economic benefactor.
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