| China has added another "no" against North Korea`s unfriendly policy to its strategic goals toward North Korea, dubbed "three nos" ― no nuclear weapons, no collapse and no war, suggesting unusual relationship between Beijing and Pyongyang.
Kim`s execution of Jang Song Thaek, his once-powerful and pro-China uncle-in-law, in December last year prompted Beijing`s move. At that time, the Kim Jong Un regime publicly denounced Jang as "a nation seller who sold off national interest overseas," provoking the Chinese leadership. A diplomatic source in Beijing said, "After all, the remark targeted China. It is a logical choice for Xi to visit South Korea before North Korea as Seoul is more friendly to Beijing."
Dr. Shi Yinhong, a Chinese foreign affairs expert and professor of international relations at Renmin University of China, conveys such a change of China in his thesis to be published on a U.S. English-language journal later this year. The draft titled "China Facing North Korea Since 2003," which the Dong-A Ilbo obtained on Wednesday, predicts that the change of North Korea-China ties from a "blood alliance" to a normal relationship will accelerate in the Xi Jinping era, that China will not tolerate the Kim regime`s unfriendly policy toward Beijing, and that Beijing will establish the basis for its North Korea policy depending on Pyongyang`s attitude.
In a telephone conversation with the Dong-A Ilbo, Shi described the future relationship between Beijing and Pyongyang as "reap as you sow" relationship.
"It is possible to analyze that the keynote for China`s North Korea policy is changing in that direction," a South Korean government official said. "The once-special North Korea-China ties are shifting to a relationship between common states."
However, some say that such a change in Beijing should not be seen to be leading to China`s open support for the South Korea-led reunification of the Korean Peninsula or further pressures on the North. It has been reported that China has not budged a bit despite continued call from Seoul and Washington for additional sanctions on the North. It is expected that China will continue for the time being to call for an unconditional resumption of the six-party talks on the denuclearization of the North, arguing that additional sanctions on Pyongyang is unnecessary as long as it does not make provocations including a new nuclear test.