Opposition leader calls for China’s ‘constructive’ role amid N.K. threats

SEOUL– Opposition leader Lee Jae-myung met with Chinese Ambassador to South Korea Xing Haiming on Monday and stressed the importance of China’s “constructive” role for regional peace in the wake of a series of North Korean missile launches.

“The tension on the Korean Peninsula has escalated to a grave situation as North Korea’s military provocations continue,” Rep. Lee of the main opposition Democratic Party (DP) told the top envoy during their meeting at the National Assembly.

“Communication and cooperation between Seoul and Beijing has become more important than ever. I again request that China play a constructive role for peace in Northeast Asia,” Lee said, calling for China’s “active” response for regional peace.

Xing said China is also concerned about the situation and called for dialogue to defuse tensions.

“I hope everyone calms down and resolves things through talks,” Xing said. “We plan to cooperate with South Korea, and exchange views with the DP to work for peace and safety on the Korean Peninsula.”

North Korea launched more than 30 ballistic missiles last week alone, including a presumed failed intercontinental ballistic missile, amid growing concerns it may soon carry out what would be its seventh nuclear test.

Lee and Xing also discussed widening civilian exchanges between the two countries in areas like the economy, culture, and arts, and among the younger generation, while offering their condolences for the victims of the Itaewon crowd crush that killed 156 people, including four Chinese nationals.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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