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China's role in taming N. Korea 'overestimated': expert

2014/05/07 11:06

BEIJING, May 7 (Yonhap) -- North Korea is not likely to heed China's warning against conducting its fourth nuclear test, a Chinese expert said Wednesday, arguing that Beijing's role in taming Pyongyang has been "overestimated."

   North Korea has threatened to carry out a "new form" of nuclear test since March. In New York on Tuesday, South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se told United Nations diplomats that the North is ready for a new test "whenever they make the necessary political decision."

   China has grown increasingly frustrated with the North's wayward behavior, but many analysts believe that Beijing would not take tougher actions, including suspending or restricting supplies of food and energy, because it could lead to a regime collapse in North Korea.

Jin Qiangyi, director of the Asia Studies Center at Yanbian University, told China's state-run Global Times newspaper that North Korea will respond with even more provocative ways if China takes a "tough stance."

   "Beijing's role has been overestimated. As long as Pyongyang is determined to develop nuclear weapons, it will not be obedient to any other country including China," Jin said.