China on Monday again called for calmness and restraint as tensions escalated sharply on the Korean Peninsula.
At a daily press briefing Monday, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said, "Now the situation of the Peninsula is highly complicated and sensitive. China maintains that it shall be in the fundamental interests of the international community to safeguard peace and stability of the Pennisula and northeast Asia."
Hua's comments came on the same day as Republic of Korea (ROK) and the United States kicked off their annual joint military exercises. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) also vowed to nullify an armistice that halted the 1950-53 Korean War from Monday.
DPRK cut off a communication hotline with ROK on Monday. DPRK also warned of more and stronger counter-measures if ROK-U.S.joint military drills continued, Yonhap News Agency said.
China urged all parties to remain calm and restrained and refrain from any actions that may escalate tensions, Hua said.
China called for parties to stick to dialogue and negotiations, seek denuclearization under the framework of the six-party talks and explore effective measures to attain lasting peace and stability of the Pennisula and northeast Asia, Hua said.