World News Brief, Thursday April 11

South Korea says possibility of missile launch by North Korea "very high"; China pledges another $548 million to Cambodia for infrastructure and irrigation projects; five UN peacekeepers killed in South Sudan; US Senate to vote on gun control; and more

Top of the Agenda: South Korea Ups Warnings of Attack From North

South Korea's foreign minister Yun Byung-se confirmed Wednesday that North Korea had moved a mid-range ballistic missile to its east coast, and said that the possibility of a missile launch by Pyongyang was "very high" (Yonhap). South Korea has asked China and Russia to help restrain North Korea from making military provocations as tensions on the Korean Peninsula have drastically escalated since the UN Security Council slapped fresh sanctions on Pyongyang. North Korea observes several anniversaries this week (Reuters), including the first anniversary of Kim Jong-un's formal ascent to power.


"It seems that China's North Korea policy is actually a part of its United States policy, which means that as long as distrust of the United States haunts some of China's decision makers and their academic consultants, China won't do 'all it can' to rein in North Korea," writes Ouyang Bin for ChinaFile.

"[Today's] North Korea becomes the true hub of the multilateral relations that dominate all of Asia. This does not mean that China is keen on seeing the sudden and unpredictable collapse of North Korea, but Beijing [can] no longer afford to put all its foreign policy apples in Pyongyang's basket, and thus it needs now more than ever to bring North Korea under control," writes Francesco Sisci for Asia Times.

"Analysts who accept the rebalancing as based on sound geo-strategic principles nevertheless say Pentagon statements and force deployments should not be the most visible face of the Obama administration's core Asia policy," writes Paul Eckert for Reuters.



China Pledges More Aid to Cambodia

China committed another $548 million in aid to Cambodia for infrastructure and irrigation projects, a move that some critics say has bought Cambodia's diplomatic support (Reuters). Chinese investment in the country has totaled $9.1 billion since 1994.

This CFR Backgrounder explains ASEAN, and delves into China and Cambodia's roles in the organization.



Five UN peacekeepers killed in South Sudan

US Senate to vote on gun control


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