China: 'Cold War thinking' behind North Korea meeting in Vancouver
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chrystia Freeland and Secretary of State of the United States, Rex Tillerson address a news conference following a meeting on the Security and Stability on the Korean Peninsula in Vancouver, B.C., Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
The Associated Press
Published Wednesday, January 17, 2018 7:16AM EST
BEIJING -- China on Wednesday said "Cold War thinking" was behind a meeting of U.S. allies on how to deal with North Korea's nuclear threat, adding that the gathering risks splitting international opinion over the issue.
China was not invited to the 20-nation conclave in Vancouver and foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said excluding it and others involved in the matter would not be helpful to finding a resolution.
"The meeting hosted by the United States and Canada in the name of United Nations Command apparently reflects their Cold War thinking," Lu said. "To convene a meeting where major parties to the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue are not represented will not help promoting an appropriate resolution over the issue."
China is the North's main economic and diplomatic ally but has signed on to increasingly harsh United Nations sanctions against Kim Jong Un's regime.
China maintains that the U.N. Security Council and the long-stalled Beijing-hosted six-party talks involving North and South Korea, Russia, the U.S., Japan and China are the only legitimate multilateral venues in which to discuss the nuclear issue.
"Therefore, the international community casts doubt on the legality and representativeness of the meeting from the very beginning," Lu said.
The meeting was attended by foreign ministers and senior diplomats of nations that sent troops or humanitarian aid to the U.N. Command that supported South Korea in the fight against the communist North and its allies during the 1950-53 Korean War.
The gathering, co-hosted by Canada and the U.S., was principally intended as a show of solidarity. China and Russia fought on the communist side in the war and neither was invited. U.S. officials say those two nations, which are the North's main economic and diplomatic partners, will be briefed afterward.