North Korea Diplomacy and U.S.-China Relations

Paul Haenle & Kaiser Kuo from Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy
Paul Haenle joined Kaiser Kuo to discuss next steps for DPRK diplomacy and tensions between the United States and China over trade, Taiwan, and the Belt and Road Initiative. Haenle shared his experience working as White House representative to the...

China and the U.S. Nuclear Posture Review

Zhao Tong & David Santoro from Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy
The Trump administration’s Nuclear Posture Review, released earlier this year, emphasized the growing threat of nuclear competition in the Asia-Pacific, specifically with reference to Russia, North Korea, and China. In this podcast, Tong Zhao, of...

China’s Rust-Belt Region Has a New Hope for Revival: North Korea

Frank Tang
South China Morning Post
China’s rust-belt region, which has been plagued by an inefficient state economy and exodus of talent, is now pinning its hopes on a new factor to help its revival: North Korea.

The Unexpected Winner From the Trump-Kim Summit: China

Jeremy Page
Wall Street Journal
China is setting its sights on a key role in North Korea’s future, seeking to be part of any peace treaty, weapons inspections and economic assistance, after emerging as a surprise beneficiary of the summit between the U.S. and North Korean leaders.

What Comes Next after the Panmunjom Summit?

Paul Haenle & Zhao Tong from Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy
Kim Jong-un became the first North Korean leader to set foot in South Korea at the Panmunjom Summit in April 2018, setting the stage for President Trump’s meeting with Kim in June. Just days after the summit, Paul Haenle spoke with Tong Zhao, a...

Kim Pays a Second Surprise Visit to China, Heightening Diplomatic Drama

Jane Perlez
New York Times
The leaders of China and North Korea met for the second time in two months on Tuesday, staying overnight in this Chinese port city as China worked to regain control in the fast-moving diplomacy over the North’s nuclear program.

China Moves to Steady Ties With North Korea Before Trump-Kim Meeting

JANE PERLEZ
New York Times
As North Korea holds summit meetings with its archenemies — first South Korea, and soon the United States — China is hustling not to lose influence.

Leaders of South Korea, Japan, China to Discuss North Korea

AP
Associated Press
The annual trilateral summit since 2008 will focus on North Korea and its nuclear weapons.

Conversation

04.25.18

Does China Want the Koreas to Reconcile?

Bo Zhiyue, Zhang Baohui & more
This Friday, April 27, the South Korean and North Korean leaders will meet in the demilitarized zone dividing their estranged countries to discuss improving relations and possibly even formally ending the Korean War, which has continued in the form...

China Fears Kim Is Moving out of Its Orbit as South Korea, US Talks Loom

Katie Hunt and Tim Schwarz
CNN
China and North Korea boast an alliance forged in blood -- more than 130,000 Chinese troops, including the son of Mao Zedong, died defending the North during the Korean War -- but the relationship has always been an uneasy one.

A Glimpse of Life along China’s Border with North Korea

Laura Mallonee
Wired
When Elijah Hurwitz checked into the Hilton Garden Inn in Dandong, China, he knew his room would have an extraordinary view: The hotel sits near the banks of the Yalu River overlooking North Korea. Out the window, a caravan of trucks with North...

Chinese President Xi Jinping Will Visit Pyongyang ‘Soon,’ Official Says

Will Ripley and Ben Westcott
CNN
Chinese President Xi Jinping is preparing to visit the North Korean capital of Pyongyang, an official with knowledge of the discussions told CNN Wednesday.

Putin’s Fourth Term

Paul Haenle & Alexander Gabuev from Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy
Vladimir Putin was elected to his fourth term as president of Russia on March 18, 2018. His continued leadership has important implications for the international community, including China.

What China Gained From Hosting Kim Jong Un

Oriana Skylar Mastro
Foreign Affairs
In late March, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, who had not stepped foot outside the hermit kingdom since taking power in 2011, traveled to Beijing to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping for the first time.
04.09.18

North Korean Group Establishes Foreign NGO Representative Office in Jilin Province

According to information on the Ministry of Public Security website, on April 3 a North Korean organization successfully registered its first foreign NGO representative office in China. Located in Changchun city, Jilin province, the North Korea...

Three Takeaways from Kim Jong Un’s Trip to China

Rush Doshi
Washington Post
What to learn from the secret meeting between Xi and Kim?

Viewpoint

03.31.18

Nixon in China, Trump in Pyongyang

Sergey Radchenko
On March 25, the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un arrived in Beijing in an armored train for talks with Chinese Communist Party Secretary Xi Jinping, the first known time he traveled outside his country since his father and predecessor died in...

Conversation

03.28.18

Kim Jong-un Visits Beijing

Sung-Yoon Lee, Ankit Panda & more
After two days of rumors, on Wednesday March 28, the official news agencies of China and North Korea announced that North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un had just completed a visit to Beijing. The “unofficial visit,” as Xinhua put it, was Kim’s first...

When Xi Met Kim: How China and North Korea Depicted It

Javier C. Hernández
New York Times
Kim Jong-un’s surprise visit to Beijing this week to meet President Xi Jinping added an element of intrigue to talks over North Korea’s nuclear program.

China Says North Korea’s Kim Pledged Commitment to Denuclearization

Ben Blanchard, Joyce Lee
Reuters
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un pledged his commitment to denuclearization and to meet U.S. officials, China said on Wednesday after his meeting with President Xi Jinping, who promised China would uphold friendship with its isolated neighbor.

What Kim Jong-Un May Get in Reaching out to China

Steven Lee Myers and Choe Sang-Hun
New York Times
A flurry of activity and speculation surrounding Beijing’s diplomatic quarter on Tuesday accompanied what officials described as an unusual, and highly secretive, visit by North Korean dignitaries, possibly even the country’s youthful leader, Kim...

North Korean Leader Kim Jong-Un Leaves Beijing after Surprise Visit

SCMP Staff
South China Morning Post
Security returns to normal in Chinese capital as armored train pulls out.

Why Would Kim Jong Un Make a Secret Trip to China?

James Griffiths
CNN
A surprise visit by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to China may indicate Pyongyang’s need for support from its closest ally ahead of upcoming summits with South Korea and the US.

North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un Is Said to Be Visiting China

Bloomberg News
Bloomberg
Kim Jong Un has made a surprise visit to Beijing on his first known trip outside North Korea since taking power in 2011, three people with knowledge of the visit said.

Conversation

03.13.18

When Trump and Kim Meet, What Will Xi Do?

Zha Daojiong, Sergey Radchenko & more
On March 8, South Korea’s National Security Advisor announced that Donald Trump had agreed to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un by May. Although now-ousted Secretary of State Rex Tillerson previously downplayed the announcement, a summit...

Beijing Watches and Waits While Trump Talks up His Meeting with Kim Jong Un

Nyshka Chandran
CNBC
The milestone summit suits Beijing's interests so the communist state isn't expected to interfere...

South Korea Moves to Ease Chinese Jitters over U.S.-North Korea Talks

Euan McKirdy
CNN
South Korean officials met with Xi about Trump-Kim Meeting.

Talks with North Korea? China Approves (No Matter the Outcome)

Jane Perlez
New York Times
When China hosted the last serious talks on North Korea’s nuclear weapons program, in the mid-2000s, the setting was a huge, hexagonal table covered in green felt, in a government guesthouse in Beijing.

China Probes Report of Possible North Korea Sanctions Breach at Sea

Reuters Staff
Reuters
China said on Thursday it is investigating a Japanese report that a Chinese ship may have carried out a ship-to-ship transfer with a North Korean vessel in breach of U.N. sanctions.

Top U.S. Sanctions Envoy Presses China to Expel North Korean Agents

Jeremy Page and Ian Talley
Wall Street Journal
The Trump administration’s top sanctions envoy pressed China in high-level meetings this week to deliver on commitments to expel North Korean agents helping finance Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons and missile programs.

Old Kim Coal: Us Officials Release Satellite Photographs Which 'Show China Flouting Sanctions by Docking in North Korea and Loading up on Fuel'

Daily Mail
Chinese companies have been violating UN sanctions against trading with North Korea, according to U.S. officials.

China's Xi supports progress in inter-Korean talks: South Korea's Blue House

Reuters
Chinese President Xi Jinping on Thursday welcomed recent progress in inter-Korean talks during a telephone call with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, the South’s Blue House said in a statement.

As Koreas Agree to Talk, China Ups Pressure on the North

CBS News
South Korea said Friday that both Koreas had agreed to hold their first talks in more than two years on Tuesday. 

China Says It Will Limit Oil, Refined Product Exports to North Korea

CNBC
China's Commerce Ministry said on Friday it will limit exports of crude oil, refined oil products, steel and other metals to North Korea, in line with tough new sanctions imposed by the United Nations for Pyongyang's missile tests...

The US and China Are Preparing for All Hell to Break Loose in North Korea

Business Insider
As tensions rise to historic heights on the Korean Peninsula, both the US and China have begun taking unprecedented steps to prepare for the worst-case scenario.

Xi Jinping Says War Must Never Be Allowed on Korean Peninsula as South's President Tries to Mend Relations on Visit to China

South China Morning Post
Chinese President Xi Jinping has said that wars on the Korean peninsula are never acceptable, adding that China would continue to support dialogue between Seoul and Pyongyang.

Fearing the Worst, China Plans Refugee Camps on North Korean Border

Jane Perlez
New York Times
A Chinese county along the border with North Korea is constructing refugee camps intended to house thousands of migrants fleeing a possible crisis on the Korean Peninsula, according to an internal document that appears to have been leaked from China...

North Korea Says U.S. Threats Make War Unavoidable as China Urges Calm

Reuters
Two American B-1B heavy bombers joined large-scale combat drills over South Korea on Thursday amid warnings from North Korea that the exercises and U.S. threats have made the outbreak of war “an established fact”.

'North Korea Is the Biggest Threat to All Humankind.' U.S. Ambassador to China Terry Branstad Talks to TIME

Time
Tucked between northeastern Beijing’s third and fourth ring-roads, the U.S. Embassy in China is a squat complex of silver-gray buildings, with the ambassador’s office on the fourth floor.

Stability and Strategy: Why Is China So Easy on North Korea?

CNBC
While the world watches North Korea test yet another missile in defiance of international sanctions and warnings, China continues to be a friend to Kim Jong Un's regime...

Air China Indefinitely Suspends Flights between Beijing and Pyongyang

Reuters
Air China Ltd has indefinitely suspended flights between Beijing and Pyongyang, citing poor demand as North Korea faces growing sanctions from the United States over its nuclear weapons and missile programs.

Air China Indefinitely Suspends Flights between Beijing and Pyongyang

Reuters
Air China Ltd has indefinitely suspended flights between Beijing and Pyongyang, citing poor demand as North Korea faces growing sanctions from the United States over its nuclear weapons and missile programs.

The North Korean Nuclear Threat: The View From Beijing

Paul Haenle & Jen Psaki from Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy
North Korea was atop the list of priorities for President Donald Trump during his first visit to China, but it remains to be seen how much substantive progress was made on bringing parties closer to a dialogue aimed at denuclearizing the Korean...

Chinese Envoy Wraps up North Korea Trip after Meetings

The Associated Press
ABC
A high-level Chinese envoy wrapped up a four-day trip to North Korea on Monday after meeting with top officials and discussing the tense state of affairs on the Korean Peninsula and other issues.

Trump Hails China's North Korea Envoy as 'Big Move' but Experts Doubtful

Ben Westcott
CNN
US President Donald Trump has hailed the Chinese government sending an envoy to North Korea Friday as a "big move" in the wake of his five-country trip to Asia...

Trump, in China, Seeks Help Over a Nuclear North Korea

Mark Landler and Jane Perlez
New York Times
President Trump arrived in China on Wednesday, primed to ask his host, President Xi Jinping, to step up Chinese pressure on North Korea over its nuclear and ballistic missile programs. But Mr. Trump’s latest foray into personal diplomacy may end in...

Viewpoint

11.08.17

Will Trump’s ‘Flattery Machine’ Work on Xi Jinping?

Orville Schell
Before winging off to Beijing, Trump managed to convince his staff and Korean President Moon to take him to the demilitarized zone (DMZ). Many of his aides were said to have been wary about the idea, fearing he might make some kind of provocative...

Exclusive: China Curbs Tourism to North Korea Ahead of Trump Visit

Sue-Lin Wong and James Pearson
Reuters
Chinese tour operators based in the border city of Dandong have been told to halt trips to the North Korean capital Pyongyang, five sources told Reuters on Tuesday, the day before U.S. President Donald Trump’s first official visit to China.

Chinese Scientists Warn North Korea about Disaster Threat at Nuclear Test Site

Stephen Chen
South China Morning Post
Chinese geologists have warned their North Korean counterparts of a potential catastrophic collapse of a North Korean underground nuclear test site on China’s doorstep.

North Korea’s Kim Congratulates China’s Xi after Congress

Christine Kim
Reuters
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un sent a rare congratulatory message to Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday at the end of China’s Communist Party Congress, wishing him “great success” as head of the nation, the North’s state media said.

China’s Challenges Abroad: How Do You Solve a Problem Like North Korea?

Scott Snyder
Forbes
The importance of the Chinese Communist Party’s 19th party congress to the future of Xi Jinping’s leadership and the direction of China has paralyzed policy debates on many issues, including North Korea. The paralysis has persisted despite the...

Waiting Game for North Korean Workers in China as Shutdown Deadline Looms

Stuart Lau Choi Chi-yuk
South China Morning Post
On a quiet street in the embassy district of Beijing, a neon-lit national flag forms an impressive backdrop to an almost empty North Korean restaurant as young waitresses sent from Pyongyang stand around waiting for customers.

China's Real Reasons for Enforcing North Korea Sanctions: Trump, Party Congress

Nyshka Chandran
CNBC
Washington has praised the world's second-largest economy for making progress in enforcing sanctions imposed on North Korea. But China's current measures may just be a temporary move for its own gain...

Why Kim Jong Un Is Alienating China

Blaine Harden
Washington Post
Totalitarian leaders usually don’t explain themselves, and Kim — six years in power and only 33 — is no exception. But insights into his Sino-belligerence can be gleaned from the back story of his family.

As Sanctions Bite, North Korean Workers Leave Chinese Border Hub

Philip Wen
Reuters
Almost 100,000 overseas workers, based predominantly in China and Russia, funnel some $500 million in wages a year to help finance the North Korean regime, the U.S. government says.

Tillerson Masters the Art of Comity in Talks with China Leaders

Nick Wadhams
Bloomberg
Rex Tillerson made a show of harmony with Chinese leaders during a whirlwind visit to Beijing, skipping over tensions around trade and North Korea to emphasize the personal bond between the countries’ presidents.

In Tillerson's China Stop, Questions on North Korea but Slim Chance of Clarity

David E. Sanger
New York Times
Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson is scheduled to arrive in Beijing early Saturday for a brief visit, amid confusing signals about President Trump’s position on two questions looming over the confrontation with North Korea: Is America’s long-term...

China to Shut down North Korean Companies

BBC
China has told North Korean companies operating in its territory to close down as it implements United Nations sanctions against the reclusive state.

There’s One North Korea Taboo China's Leaders Won’t Talk About

Ting Shi and David Tweed
Bloomberg
In discussions between the U.S. and China about reining in North Korea, one topic remains taboo: What would happen if Kim Jong Un’s regime collapses?

Sinica Podcast

09.22.17

North Korea Behind the Scenes

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn & more from Sinica Podcast
North Korea is a mystery to nearly everyone—even those who have dedicated their lives to studying the country, including Korean experts based in Seoul, national security experts in Washington or Beijing, and a variety of foreigners who have spent...