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Three nots seen behind China's sudden thaw with South Korea

Seoul's reaction to missile defense could invite rift with US, Japan

HIROSHI MINEGISHI, Nikkei Seoul bureau chief | China

SEOUL -- The recent agreement by South Korea and China to mend a relationship strained by a U.S. missile defense system could mark a shift in an Asian power balance that long pitted Seoul, Washington and Japan against Beijing.

The deal announced Oct. 31 -- just days before U.S. President Donald Trump's Asian tour kicked off -- seemed to do little more than reiterate views South Korea had previously expressed, such as acknowledging China's concern the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system could threaten national security.

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