Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying. Photo: Foreign Ministry of PRC

As Chinese and Russian diplomats sat down in Beijing (link in Chinese) this week to discuss North Korea for the second time in two months, both found plenty to agree on when the US slapped a fresh round of sanctions on firms from the two countries.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov issued a statement in response to the punitive action, targeting private firms and individuals, saying that Moscow has not lost hope that America will recognize “the futility and detrimental nature of further sliding down the spiral of sanctions.” But, he added “in the meantime, we are beginning to work out the inevitable response to this situation.”

At a regular press briefing (link in Chinese) on Wednesday, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying made China’s position on the new action abundantly clear, saying “we urge the US to immediately cease their mistaken course of action.”

China opposes any unilateral action taken outside of the framework of the US Security Council, Hua added. “China will fully and earnestly enforce the Security Council resolutions relating to North Korea […] Regarding Chinese firms and individuals, if there are those which have violated the Security Council resolution, we will investigate and deal with according to domestic law.”