Continued from page 1

Most Western foreign policy analysts agree that China’s interests are rooted in a desire to grow its own regional power base — a policy that would, inherently, resist a Washington-engineered resolution to the Korean conflict.
During a meeting Tuesday with ambassadors from North and South Korea and the U.S., China’s foreign minister “expressed serious concern” about the recent wave of tension of the Korean Peninsula and urged all sides to “remain calm and exercise restraint,” according to a report by Reuters.

However, the remarks coincided reports that Beijing continues to quietly build up its military assets in northeastern China, a move some believe is tied to the crisis with North Korea.

Such belief appears to have been on the mind of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, who reached out by telephone Tuesday evening to his Chinese counterpart, Gen. Chang Wanquan.

During the call, Mr. Hagel “emphasized the growing threat to the U.S. and our allies posed by North Korea’s aggressive pursuit of nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs,” the Pentagon said in a statement.
The defense secretary, who is slated to pay a rare visit to China later this month with Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, “expressed to Gen. Chang the importance of sustained U.S.-China dialogue and cooperation on these issues,” the statement said.

Shaun Waterman contributed to this report.