Commentary: No room to play with fire on Korean Peninsula issue

Source: Xinhua| 2017-08-09 18:57:30|Editor: ying
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by Xinhua writers Qu Junya, Du Baiyu

BEIJING, Aug. 9 (Xinhua) -- A way out of the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula cannot be found in the latest exchange of tough words between Washington and Pyongyang.

Unless there's a return to reason and a full commitment to a practical and peaceful solution, such a hostile approach will do little but make things worse.

Just earlier in the day, Pyongyang said it was mulling launching a missile strike against the U.S. Pacific military base of Guam, hours after U.S. President Donald Trump vowed to counter threats from Pyongyang with "fire and fury."

The war of words came two days after Washington and Seoul vowed to do the utmost to pressure Pyongyang into compromises, and after Pyongyang issued a statement against the new United Nations Security Council resolution on sanctions against its ballistic missile and nuclear programs.

"If the U.S. fails to act with discretion, persisting in its reckless attempts to stifle the DPRK (Democratic People's Republic of Korea), we will not waver or hesitate to use any form of ultimate means," Pyongyang said in the statement.

However, the bottom line on the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula is that there must not be any armed conflict there. There is no room for any related party to play with fire on the issue.

Exercising restraint is needed for making responsible choices to ensure peace, particularly at a moment approaching crisis, which can however also serve as a turning point for coming back to the negotiation table.

China has always advocated a return to the six-party talks to seek a peaceful solution. In China's latest mediation efforts, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi met in Manila during the just-concluded foreign ministers meeting on East Asian cooperation with his DPRK, South Korean and U.S. counterparts to urge understanding and dialogue.

The new security council resolution passed on Aug. 5 is a necessary response to the series of ballistic missile test launches made by Pyongyang.

For Seoul, an uncontrolled situation and even perhaps any accidental spark could trigger a conflict and prove to be a disaster it cannot afford.

As for the Untied States, it should commit itself to realizing the fundamentals it has recently reiterated on the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula, including seeking no regime change in the DPRK nor a speedy Korean reunification.

It is advised that Washington, Seoul and Pyongyang take into serious consideration China's proposal that they start from addressing their pressing security concerns to build up mutual trust, effectively paving the way for restoring talks.

That means that Pyongyang should suspend its ballistic missile and nuclear programs while Washington and Seoul suspend their joint military drills.

It is fact that the DPRK missile and nuclear programs stalled during bilateral and multilateral talks, but multiplied over the past nine years since the six-party talks came to grinding halt, during which the United States sought to pressure and sanction Pyongyang.

Reality has shown that tough tit-for-tat confrontations can lead nowhere, and that only dialogue can help address reasonable security concerns of the related parties for a solution acceptable to all, ensure denuclearization on the peninsula and bring a lasting peace to the entire region.