China will be closely watching President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's meeting in Singapore next Tuesday, not least because Beijing's best outcome would be for U.S. troops to get out of the Korean Peninsula, said analysts.
"Beijing will be advocating that the price for peace should be a full withdrawal of U.S. troops from South Korea," said Hugo Brennan, senior politics analyst for Asia at Verisk Maplecroft, a risk consultancy.
But first, China may be trying to angle itself back into the game after earlier speculation that the country was responsible for an earlier derailment of Trump and Kim's meeting. That was as Beijing was becoming increasing nervous that a potential reunification of North and South Korea may bring U.S. troops closer to its doors.
Despite that risk, suggestions that China wants to "spoil the party at any cost" are "wide off the mark," Brennan said.
After all, Beijing has a strategic interest in reduced tensions on the Korean Peninsula. The Chinese also would not want to put Trump's "fire and fury" threat to the test, said Brennan.