(Reuters) – China warned against “troublemaking” on its doorstep, in an apparent rebuke to North Korea, and the United States said it was postponing a missile test to help calm high tension on the divided Korean peninsula.
China, North Korea’s sole financial and diplomatic backer, has shown growing irritation with Pyongyang’s warnings of nuclear war.
Chinese President Xi Jinping, addressing a forum on the southern island of Hainan, did not name North Korea but said no country “should be allowed to throw a region and even the whole world into chaos for selfish gain”.
Stability in Asia, he said, “faces new challenges, as hot spot issues keep emerging and both traditional and non-traditional security threats exist”.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi expressed similar frustration in a statement late on Saturday, relating a telephone conversation with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
“We oppose provocative words and actions from any party in the region and do not allow trouble making on China’s doorstep,” Wang said, according to a ministry statement on its website.
On Sunday, the ministry expressed “grave concern” at rising tension and said China had asked North Korea to “ensure the safety of Chinese diplomats in North Korea, in accordance with the Vienna Convention and international laws and norms”.
China’s embassy, it said, was “understood” to be operating normally in Pyongyang.