China, Rus­sia agree on more ‘coun­ter­mea­sures’ against US anti-mis­sile sys­tem

Manila Bulletin - - World News -

BEI­JING (Reuters) — China and Rus­sia have agreed to take fur­ther un­spec­i­fied “coun­ter­mea­sures” in re­sponse to a US plan to de­ploy an anti-mis­sile sys­tem in South Korea, state news agency Xinhua re­ported on Fri­day.

The coun­ter­mea­sures “will be aimed at safe­guard­ing in­ter­ests of China and Rus­sia and the strate­gic bal­ance in the re­gion,” Xinhua said, cit­ing a state­ment re­leased af­ter a China-Rus­sia se­cu­rity meet­ing.

China and Rus­sia held a joint an­timis­sile drill last May af­ter Wash­ing­ton and Seoul be­gan dis­cus­sions over in­stalling the US Ter­mi­nal High Al­ti­tude Area De­fense (THAAD) sys­tem to counter any North Korean threats.

THAAD is now due to be de­ployed on a South Korean golf course, un­set­tling Moscow and Bei­jing, which worry that the sys­tem’s pow­er­ful radar will com­pro­mise their se­cu­rity and do noth­ing to lower ten­sions on the Korean penin­sula.

China and Rus­sia said in Oc­to­ber they would hold a sec­ond drill this year.

“China and Rus­sia urged the United States and South Korea to ad­dress their se­cu­rity con­cerns and stop the de­ploy­ment of THAAD on the Korean Penin­sula,” Xinhua quoted the state­ment as say­ing.

North Korea’s drive to de­velop nu­clear weapons ca­pa­bil­ity has an­gered China, Py­ongyang’s sole ma­jor diplo­matic and eco­nomic sup­porter. How­ever, Bei­jing fears THAAD and its radar have a range that would ex­tend into China.

On Thurs­day, South Korea’s trade min­is­ter said the South might com­plain to China about ac­tions per­ceived to have been taken in re­tal­i­a­tion for its de­ci­sion to de­ploy the US anti-mis­sile sys­tem.

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