China Policy Institute Blog

Tuning Out Beijing’s Six-Party Drumbeat

Written by Adam Cathcart. You know things are not going particularly well for China’s diplomatic efforts in Pyongyang when a visit by a small second-rank student song-and-dance ensemble from Dalian starts to look like of some kind of breakthrough in relations. But with the DPRK making ever-louder noises about some new-style nuclear deterrent, that is …

Red Lines and Correct Roads: Recent Chinese Policy Discourse on North Korea

Written by Adam Cathcart. When Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi talked about “a red line” at a press conference at the National People’s Congress on Saturday, one could be forgiven for imagining that China was in the process of standing up once and for all to North Korea’s transgressive behaviour. After all, in the preceding days, Kim Jong-un …

Pressing North Korea through economic sanctions: Does it work?

Written by Gyubin Choi. Inter-Korean relations could hardly be worse than they are currently. After North Korea’s third nuclear test on 12 February 2013, the military hot line between the two Koreas was disconnected, and the last symbol of inter-Korean economic cooperation, the Gaeseong Industrial Complex suspended its operations.[1] In response to the UN Security …

North Korea is Another ‘Upper Volta with Nukes,’ so Ignore Them

Written by Robert E. Kelly. Earlier this month, I posted my thoughts on the North Korea (NK) crisis at the Diplomat, where I called NK the ‘boy who cried wolf’ because no one believes their bluster anymore. The piece enjoyed good traffic, and I am happy to take up the invitation of the China Policy …

China and the Korean Peninsula

Christoph Bluth is professor of International Studies at the University of Leeds. He is a specialist in international security and a world authority on security on the Korean Peninsula. He visited us at the School of Contemporary Chinese Studies last week to talk about China’s relations with both North and South Korea. Here’s the video …

How would China benefit from a united Korea?

By Steve Tsang The official Chinese reaction to North Korea’s third nuclear test is stern but lacks meaningful bite. Beijing proclaims itself “strongly dissatisfied and resolutely opposed” to the test, and has called for the resumption of international talks. Chinese leaders seemingly fail to recognize that this event is a game-changer, and that they no …

The Failed North Korean ‘Satellite’ Launch – an opportunity for a Sino-Japanese symbiotic solution?

By Mike Bastin. North Korea’s very recent rocket launch has of course provoked international condemnation and outrage, despite the fact that the rocket appears to have failed spectacularly. In fact, the failed launch is perhaps most remarkable for the unusually candid manner in which the North Korean media have reported the incident. Reports from North …

So where does North Korea go from here?

By Steve Tsang, published in Nottingham Post Wednesday December 28, 2011. THE leader of the last totalitarian state, Kim Jong-il, is dead. But this is not the end of near totalitarianism in North Korea or the end of the Kim dynasty. The new leader of North Korea will be Kim’s youngest son, Kim Jong-un, who …

A US overture now may find welcome in Pyongyang

Steve Tsang says Washington should certainly try, given the benefits of success. Published in the South China Morning Post, 23 December 2011. As an unpredictable nuclear power thrashes out a succession strategy for life after Kim Jong-il, the international community grows nervous. But the United  States and its allies have a rare opportunity to present …