THAAD standoff: China, South Korea agree to mend ties days before Donald Trump’ Asia trip


Seoul: Seoul and Beijing agreed on Tuesday to move beyond a one-year standoff over the deployment of a US anti-missile system in South Korea, a dispute that has been devastating for South Korean companies that depend on Chinese consumers.

The unexpected disarray comes days before US President Donald Trump begins a trip to Asia, where North Korea’s nuclear crisis will be the center of attention and help boost South Korea’s actions to a level record.

The installation of the High Altitude Area Defense System (THAAD) of the United States Terminal infuriated China, and the tourism, cosmetics and entertainment industries of South Korea were the most punished by China, although Beijing has never related it specifically with the deployment of THAAD.

Beijing is concerned that the powerful radar of the THAAD system may penetrate Chinese territory.

“Both sides shared the view that strengthening the exchange and cooperation between Korea and China serves their common interests and agreed to quickly restore exchange and cooperation in all areas on a normal development path,” said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Foreign of South Korea in a statement.

Before the THAAD dispute, bilateral relations flourished, despite Beijing’s historic alliance with North Korea and Seoul’s close ties with Washington, which includes the accommodation of 28,500 US troops. China is South Korea’s largest trading partner.

“At this critical moment all interested parties should work together to address North Korea’s nuclear challenge rather than create problems for others,” said Wang Dong, an associate professor of international studies at Peking University in China.

“This sends a very positive signal that Beijing and Seoul are determined to improve their relations.”

As part of the agreement, South Korean President Moon Jae-in will meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping in the framework of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Vietnam from November 10 to 11. .

South Korea acknowledged China’s concerns over THAAD and made it clear that the deployment was not aimed at any third country and did not harm China’s strategic security interests, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said.