China has asked the United States and North Korea to immediately put an end to hostile actions and rhetoric capable of escalating tension. This follows signs that Pyongyang is backing away from its threat to launch missiles toward the U.S. Territory Of Guam.

On Tuesday, Chinese Foreign Affairs Minister Wang Yi (in a telephone conversation with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov) said the peaceful resolution of the nuclear issue in the region is in the best interest of all parties, which include Russia and China.

China and Russia’s efforts

A statement from the Chinese foreign ministry said Wang also volunteered to coordinate closely on the issue by ensuring a strong communication mechanism of the countries and working together to control, manage and resolve the situation in order to prevent further escalation of the August crisis.

The statement further said that Wang and Lavrov maintained during the telephone conversation that there is no other option than a political and diplomatic settlement to the nuclear issues.

Also, a statement from Russia’s foreign ministry said Moscow and Beijing discussed possible means of resolving confrontation and the tension on the Korean Peninsula and that military confrontation and threat of using force against North Korea were totally unacceptable.

Pyongyang backs down from proposed strike

The call for restraint by China and Russia comes after North Korean state-run KCNA media reported that leader Kim Jong Un had reviewed plans to launch four missiles off the coast of Japan toward the Pacific territory of Guam, but had put the plans on hold for the time being.

The KCNA reported on Tuesday that Kim had long examined the strike and discussed with top military commanders before the announcement.

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The United States and South Korea have concluded plans to conduct military exercises on the Korean Peninsula. The military drill is expected to begin from August 21 and end on August 31.

China’s state-run tabloid, the Global Times said in an editorial that the military exercises if carried out will definitely provoke North Korea and Pyongyang could response in a more aggressive manner. The report said if South Korea actually wants no military confrontation on the Korean Peninsula, then it should try to cancel the exercises.

The Chinese foreign ministry told reporters that China’s main position to the resolution of the North Korean nuclear crisis is to uphold the general principle of direct dialogue, negotiation, diplomatic and political settlement.