Foreign ministry cautions China’s ambassador over remarks on presidential front-runner

SEOUL-- A senior foreign ministry official cautioned Chinese Ambassador Xing Haiming after the envoy's public rebuttal of a South Korean presidential hopeful's remarks prompted criticism it could amount to political interference, an official said.

In a contribution to the local daily Joong-Ang Ilbo on Friday, Xing rebutted remarks by Yoon Seok-youl, a conservative presidential hopeful, that China should first remove its long-range radar systems on its border if it wants a U.S. anti-missile system, called THAAD, to be withdrawn from South Korea.

"A senior official of our ministry once again delivered our position directly to Ambassador Xing Haiming afterward," a ministry official said, declining to specify when or how the meeting took place.

Another ministry official said that Xing came to the foreign ministry earlier in the day and met with Yeo Seung-bae, deputy foreign minister for political affairs.

After Xing's contribution was published, a foreign ministry official expressed concerns that such remarks can "have a negative effect" on the development of bilateral relations and called for the envoy to be "cautious".

But critics argued that the government was not doing enough about the remarks that can be seen as interfering in politics of the host country.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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