A China government-linked think tank has admitted that North Korea has shut the door on Beijing, which is now powerless to negotiate with its rogue neighbour.
Australia, the UK and the US are keeping pressure on China to reign in Kim Jong-un but
analysts from the China Institute of International Studies, affiliated with China’s ministry of foreign affairs, argue the west has miscalculated the influence China has over North Korea.
They say China has no avenue to negotiate with North Korea any more, insisting the dictatorship has shut the door on Beijing.
“You are pushing China to do something, but in this dilemma China can do almost nothing,” an analyst told Australian reporters in Beijing.
Analysts argue China is taking the mature approach to North Korea, insisting Kim Jong-un’s missile tests are an attempt to create leverage to force the US to open dialogue.
They argue China has more to lose than most nations if tensions boil over, fearing a flood of refugees over its northeast border if North Korea made a suicidal first move.
“It’s terrible so that’s why China needs to make sure the situation calms down,” one analyst said.
“If China and other countries don’t use the brakes, maybe these two trains will collide.” Australia has received reports North Korea may use yesterday’s anniversary of the end of the Korean War to fire another test missile.
It comes amid reports the Pentagon predicts Kim Jong-un will be able to launch a nuclear strike against Australia and the US as early as next year.
Defence Minister Marise Payne on Thursday repeated calls for China to engage with North Korea “to emphasise the foolhardy nature of the activities in which they’re occupied in relation to missile activities”.
British Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon also urged China to step up. “It is now for Beijing to use the influence it has over the North Korean regime to get it to abandon its program,” he said.
The analysts maintain North Korea isn’t interested in dealing with China, insisting the US controls the situation.
“We need to make sure the DPRK has their security guaranteed by the international community.
“North Korea should suspend nuclear and missile testing but the US and South Korea should suspend military exercises.”
AAP | Australian