By: Matthew Brown
BEIJING — China defended its trade practices on Tuesday after Chinese-made vehicles were seen towing ballistic missiles during a North Korea military parade despite international sanctions against selling military hardware to Pyongyang.
Saturday's parade honoring North Korea's founder, Kim Il Sung, came amid heightened tensions over the country's nuclear ambitions. It featured a senior official, Choe Ryong Hae, warning of "all-out war" if North Korea is attacked.
Photos provided by the North Korean government showed the submarine-launched missiles being pulled by trucks bearing the logo of the Chinese company Sinotruk.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said China conducts "normal" business with its neighbor North Korea while adhering to sanctions imposed beginning in 2006 by the United Nations Security Council.
"China has been performing its international obligations strictly, including those stipulated in the Security Council resolution. But meanwhile, we carry on normal economic exchanges and trade with all parties including North Korea," Lu said.
China accounts for an estimated 80 percent of North Korea's foreign trade, along with crucial food and fuel assistance.
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