China’s top diplomat holds talks with President Donald Trump on North Korea
Chinese top diplomat Donald Trump said Beijing was willing to continue working with Washington to reduce tensions on the Korean peninsula – days after the American leader has hinted that Chinese efforts had failed.
The meeting between State Councilor Yang Jiechi and Trump at the White House on Thursday also came after Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has urged China to strengthen diplomatic and economic pressure in the North over its nuclear weapons.
The meeting was reported by the Chinese Foreign Ministry. There was no White House statement about meetings that were not mentioned in the president’s daily schedule.
“China is willing to maintain communication and coordination with relevant parties, including the United States to ease tensions on the peninsula,” Yang said, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Trump told Yang that he hoped to “strengthen cooperation” with China over the denuclearization of the North, the ministry said in a statement. Wednesday Yang and General Fang Fenghui met Tillerson and Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, the State Department to discuss North Korea and other regional issues.
Hours before the talks, Trump sent a tweet that seemed to suggest that Chinese President Xi Jinping had responded within his grasp.
“Although I greatly appreciate the efforts of President Xi and China to help North Korea, it did not work. At least I know China has tried!” Wrote Trump.
Trump did not say what could happen next if China, by far, the most important and the North Asian trade partner, is out of ideas.
Trump, who has frequently criticized China in the election campaign, returned to Beijing for help to pressure its ally North Korea, which has caused concern among Asian partners that the United States could be easy for Beijing in its expansive pretensions In the South China Sea.
Trump, who met Xi at his luxury resort in Florida in April, also confirmed that he would visit China later this year, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said.
Tillerson said Wednesday that China was a “diplomatic responsibility to exert much greater economic and diplomatic pressure on the regime if it is to prevent further escalation in the region.”
Chinese envoys called for negotiations, offering a new “two-way approach” in which North Korea could suspend its nuclear and missile activities, while South Korea and end military exercises on a large scale .
The meetings between the two following parts of Otto Warmbier’s death Monday, the American student returns to the United States last week in a coma after being detained in North Korea for 18 months.