China calls for calm as North Korea readies rocket launch

BEIJING Tue Apr 10, 2012 3:34am EDT

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BEIJING (Reuters) - China on Tuesday reiterated its calls for calm and restraint on the Korean peninsula as North Korea said it was nearing completion of preparations to launch a rocket condemned by the West as a violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions.

All sides should respect international law to prevent the worsening of tensions on the peninsula, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin told a daily news briefing.

North Korea, which is pressing ahead with plans for a satellite launch despite U.S. and regional objections, is also preparing a third nuclear test, South Korean news reports said on Sunday.

Another nuclear test would almost certainly alarm neighbors and infuriate the West, which has long sought to curb the North's nuclear ambitions.

(Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Don Durfee)

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