S.Korea, China Say War 'Can't Be Tolerated' on Korean Peninsula

North Korean soldiers attend a mass rally to celebrate the county's declaration of full nuclear statehood on Nov. 29 in Pyongyang on Dec. 1 2017

S.Korea, China Say War 'Can't Be Tolerated' on Korean Peninsula

News of the scuffle dominated South Korean media coverage of Moon's four-day state visit to China, during which the president is expected to discuss economic ties and tensions with North Korea with his counterpart Xi Jinping.

Open questions include whether China will participate more actively in sanctioning North Korea and to what extent economic cooperation can be restored following tensions over South Korea's deployment of USA -provided THAAD missile defense.

South Korea has invited Chinese President Xi Jinping to attend the February Games, hoping they will serve as a turning point for peace on the Korean peninsula.

South Korean celebrities, including some of those accompanying Moon, had been shut out of Chinese television and concert halls as relations cooled between the East Asian neighbours as they faced the threat posed by North Korea's missile and nuclear programmes.

But Moon stressed the October 31 agreement to normalize ties after the THAAD dispute and said, "It is important for the two countries to restore the bilateral relations as soon as possible based on mutual respect of the main interests of the two countries".

Moon also acknowledged the "temporary difficulties" between the nations, without mentioning the in US-made Terminal High Altitude Area Defence system.

The Moon-Xi meeting will mark the third bilateral summit between the two leaders, the Korean Herald reported.

"It takes a long time to recover from a setback, but relations between the two countries are now improving fast", the statement quoted Xi as saying.

But it wasn't clear if China and South Korea have fully resolved their differences over THAAD.

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Moon expressed hopes for China's collaboration in resolving North Korea's nuclear issue, and that the frosty relations in the recent years could provide an opportunity for furthering relations.

"China-Korea relations, and the situation on the Korean Peninsula are at a critical juncture".

Xi and Moon had earlier agreed on steps to defuse the THAAD issue.

The two sides will also seek more cooperation in health and welfare, livestock hygiene and quarantine, the energy industry, and for the organization committees of PyeongChang and Beijing winter Olympic Games. Instead, he told Xi that he expects China to play a greater role, according to one Cheong Wa Dae official.

Moon kicked off the second day of his visit to China by eating breakfast at a local restaurant in Beijing.

Meeting in Beijing's Great Hall of the People, Xi told Moon the goal of denuclearising the Korean Peninsula must be stuck to, and war and chaos can not be allowed, Chinese state media said.

The South Koreans should have "found an equilibrium" between the media's needs and the guards' "professional requirements".

On Wednesday, Moon addressed a Korea-China business forum, and said that economic development of Korea and China is intricately bound to each other, and called for stronger future oriented relationship of economic cooperation.

Moon's stay in Beijing will be wrapped on Friday, when he is scheduled to meet with Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress Zhang Dejiang and Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang, after giving a speech at Peking University.

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