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China Argues Lifting North Korea Sanctions 'Best Plan' To Encourage Talks

China Argues Lifting North Korea Sanctions 'Best Plan' To Encourage Talks

China said lifting sanctions on North Korea would be the best way to break the deadlock in stalled denuclearization talks between the United States and North Korea, according to Reuters.

What Happened

Making a case for its U.N. proposal for North Korean sanctions relief, China said on Thursday the proposed relief would help ease tensions between Washington and Pyongyang.

“This is the best plan in the current situation to resolve the stalemate in the denuclearization of North Korea and for its peace and stability,” said Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Luo Zhaohui.

Earlier on Monday, China and Russia submitted a joint proposal to the U.N. Security Council seeking to lift a ban on North Korea exporting statues and ease restrictions on infrastructure projects and North Koreans working overseas.

Why It Matters

Luo’s comments come just as Stephen Biegun, the U.S. special envoy for North Korea, is set to arrive in Beijing on Thursday.

The U.S. State Department said on Tuesday that Biegun would meet Chinese officials “to discuss the need to maintain international unity on North Korea,” after China and Russia proposed the North Korean sanctions relief.

The United States earlier reacted to the proposal by saying now was not the right time to lift sanctions on North Korea.

North Korea is “threatening to conduct an escalated provocation, refusing to meet to discuss denuclearization, and continuing to maintain and advance its prohibited weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs,” said a U.S. State Department official, at the time.


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