Chinese envoy holds Seoul talks amid tensions

South Korea has pressed China to support its efforts to punish North Korea.

Seoul: South Korea pressed China on Tuesday to support its efforts to punish North Korea for the deadly sinking of a warship which has raised regional tensions.

Senior Chinese official Wu Dawei, Beijing`s special representative for Korean affairs, declined comment as he arrived to meet Foreign Minister Yu Myung-Hwan, who is mounting an intensive diplomatic drive to secure international support in the crisis.

The South`s President Lee Myung-Bak on Monday announced a package of reprisals after international investigators reported that a North Korean submarine torpedoed the Cheonan on March 26 with the loss of 46 lives.

Lee cut trade and other exchanges and barred the North`s merchant ships from using his country`s sea lanes.

He said Seoul would refer the sinking to the United Nations Security Council -- where the North`s ally China could veto any moves to impose new sanctions.

With the release of the final investigation report, "no responsible country" will be able to deny that the North sank the corvette, Lee said.

The United States strongly backed the measures and announced it would hold anti-submarine and other naval exercises with South Korea in the near future.

Bureau Report

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