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China wants to play peacemaker for US-North Korea

Beijing holds out hope for talks even as Pyongyang is flouts its warnings

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Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, right, meets his North Korean counterpart Ri Yong Ho in Manila on the same day.   © Reuters

MANILA The relationship between China and North Korea is not quite as special as it once was. Chinese President Xi Jinping has often referred to their "blood ties," forged when the two sides fought against the U.S. in the Korean War. More recently, Beijing has repeatedly defended Pyongyang against pressure, protecting the rogue nation almost as if it were a wayward younger brother.

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