USA tells North Korea to end missile tests for talks

Carla Harmon
August 12, 2017

China is North Korea's biggest trade partner, and while it has backed sanctions and is angry at the North Korean nuclear programme bringing global tensions to its doorstep, it has called for dialogue to resolve the crisis.

"It played an important role to get China on board", one diplomat said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

In July, North Korea conducted two tests of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) in violation of previous UNSC resolutions, with the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) stating that the second test, carried out on July 28, was successful.

USA tells North Korea to end missile tests for talks

The question of whether Beijing would go along with much harsher sanctions against North Korea was answered this weekend.

"Very happy and impressed with 15-0 United Nations vote on North Korea sanctions", he wrote.

"It's quite clear in terms of there being no daylight between the worldwide community as to the expectation that North Korea will take steps to achieve all of my objectives, which is a denuclearised Korean peninsula", he told reporters on Monday.

"Moreover, those U.S. elites may not have considered the leverage China has over the U.S. What if China restricts the usage of iPhones and the number of Chinese students to the U.S., or imports fewer U.S. agricultural products?" Earlier, Pyongyang said it is ready to give Washington a "severe lesson" with its strategic nuclear force in response to any US military action.

Tillerson, speaking on the sidelines of a regional security meeting in Manila, said the execution and implementation of new United Nations sanctions would be carefully watched and the resolution sends a strong message that North Korea needs to understand what the world expects of it. An announcement was initially planned for last Friday but was postponed, apparently after China softened its resistance to new United Nations sanctions, diplomats said.

Joseph Bermudez, a specialist in North Korean defence and intelligence affairs, posted photographs on the 38 North blog of the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University, which he said could show preparations for a test of a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM).

"This course of action can not be sustained indefinitely", one US official said.

The Russian foreign minister was quoted as telling Kang, "The Russian government will cooperate with the South Korean government closely for their common goal of attaining a denuclearized Korean Peninsula through peaceful ways under the firm principle of never condoning North Korea's nuclear program". He also said any dialogue would deal with how North Korea can "feel secure and prosper economically".

"It is conceivable that North Korea's nuclear weapons program has already considerably advanced and it is possible that North Korea has already achieved the miniaturization of nuclear weapons and has acquired nuclear warheads", it said.

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