Monday, 16 October, 2017

China urges N. Korea to stop missile tests, resume talks

China Calls for Mutual Respect in Strengthening Relations with US US offers N. Korea direct talks if missile tests stop, doesn't mention nuclear testing
Melinda Barton | 12 August, 2017, 18:31

Southeast Asian countries are "not happy" with North Korea's missile tests, Cambodia's foreign minister said on Wednesday, calling them a threat to regional security. He pointed out the continued existence of "informal, unreported smuggling" across China's border with North Korea, and added, "so the actual reduction in exports is going to be, it seems to me, far less than $1 billion, and that will not hurt the regime in any severe way at all". He said the countries needed to show Pyongyang that the door to dialogue was open if North Korea gave up its nuclear weapons and missile programs, according to a Moon spokesman.

When CBS News visited North Korea in the spring, we watched as Kim unveil a massive new neighborhood of shimmering high rises; his way of showing the world that six previous rounds of United Nations sanctions over more than a decade have not worked. "Very big financial impact!" he tweeted.

The Security Council has already imposed six rounds of sanctions that have failed to halt North Korea's drive to improve its ballistic missile and nuclear weapons capabilities.

Susan Thornton is the top USA diplomat for Asia.

US President Donald Trump commended China and Russian Federation for their support on the US-drafted resolution, saying he "appreciates" their votes.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson sought to build pressure on North Korea after securing a new round of United Nations sanctions as he launched into two days of high-level diplomacy on Sunday.

Even as the top USA diplomat seeks to ratchet up the pressure, he threw an olive branch to North Korea during remarks to the press on Tuesday: "We hope that at some point, they will begin to understand that and that we would like to sit and have a dialogue with them about the future that will give them the security they seek", he said.

The national airline, Air Koryo, now only flies to cities in China and Russian Federation after other Asian nations and Kuwait dropped flights a year ago. Aside from military force, scenarios range from a new round of peace talks at the dovish end of the spectrum, to more hawkish actions like interdicting ships suspected of selling North Korea weapons overseas, one of the regime's key sources of income.

Before Tillerson's trip, the US had said he had no plans to interact with North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho. He said only complete sanctions might force North Korea to return to the negotiating table, but that China and Russian Federation would not agree to force Pyongyang into such a corner.

If China and Russian Federation fail to enforce the sanctions and fail to intervene forcefully with North Korea, Fishman said that the US can impose unilateral sanctions.

In their first meeting since Kono took up his new post in last week's Cabinet reshuffle, he and Tillerson agreed to hold the next round of four-way security talks between their foreign and defense ministers "at an early date", according to the Japanese official. Tillerson says he and the South Korean diplomat plan to discuss the sanctions during their meeting, along with next steps to pressure the North.

"They're not self-sufficient in building nuclear bombs and ICBMs, so these sanctions are a big threat", Byrne said.

Wang also met US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in Manila late yesterday.