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undergroundnewsroom.com August 22, 2017


Tillerson urges Pyongyang to stop missile tests

08 August 2017, 12:45 | Damon Campbell

China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi

China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said during the ASEAN forum that China and Russia's support for the latest sanctions sent a strong message to North Korea, but also said, "when the conditions are right then we can sit and have a dialogue around the future of North Korea, so they feel secure and prosper economically".

North Korea's open flouting of United Nations rules with its missile launches meant that it had to be punished, but sanctions had to be precisely targeted, said in the front page commentary of the overseas edition of the ruling Communist Party's official People's Daily newspaper.

Wang said he urged North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho to stop carrying out intercontinental ballistic missile tests.

Tillerson also met Russia's foreign minister Sergei Lavrov and was to see Wang later, seeking to intensify Kim Jong-Un's diplomatic isolation and reduce the risk of renewed conflict. He cited the "very big financial impact" of the sanctions and noted optimistically both China and Russian Federation had joined in the unanimous vote.

China expressed confidence that new United Nations sanctions would help bring North Korea to the negotiating table to end its push for nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles.

The sanctions aim to cut North Korea's estimated $3 billion (£2.3 billion) in annual exports by a third and all countries are now banned from importing North Korean coal, iron, lead and seafood products.

President Donald Trump wants full implementation of the new penalties and called on North Korea's biggest trading partner China to implement the sanctions.

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After weeks of USA frustration over China's reluctance to take action, Trump's strategy of relying on Beijing's help showed early signs of paying off.

"The best signal that North Korea could give us that they're prepared to talk would be to stop these missile launches", Tillerson said here.

The Chinese official also said he hoped the United States would seriously consider China's proposed "dual suspension" of military drills in the South and missile tests in the North.

Disagreement partly over whether to include criticism, even indirectly, of China's increasingly assertive moves in the contested territories delayed the issuance of a joint communique of ASEAN foreign ministers after they held their annual meetings on Saturday in Manila.

HU: (Laughter) This sounds extreme, but it is actually rather par for the course, if not tame, for North Korean state media threats.

On the heels of that win at the United Nations, the USA has been trying to isolate North Korea at the gathering of leaders in Manila, campaigning for its expulsion from the ASEAN Regional Forum.

China's foreign minister said over the weekend that talks for a long-sought code of conduct in the South China Sea, first mooted in 2002, may finally start this year if "outside parties" don't cause a major disruption.



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