Southeast Asian unhappy over North Korea's missile tests - Cambodia

Patrice Gainsbourg
Agosto 13, 2017

The Trump administration cautiously embraced China's apparent newfound cooperation, while putting it on notice that the USA would be watching closely to ensure it didn't ease up on North Korea if and when the world's attention is diverted elsewhere.

The Trump administration has made clear it does not favor the China-Russia plan, however.

Taking a stronger tone on Saturday than it has previously on the standoff, the ASEAN called for North Korea to comply with United Nations Security Council resolutions on its nuclear program, and make a positive contribution to regional peace, said a Reuters report.

As diplomats gathered in the Philippines for an annual regional meeting, President Donald Trump was cheering the move.

China, as a permanent member of the UNSC, upheld an impartial and objective position and played a responsible and constructive role in the process of the adoption of the resolution, he said.

He also recalled that in 1957, the United States introduced nuclear weapons to South Korea, "thus opening the way to nuclearizing the Korean Peninsula".

China has repeatedly said it was committed to enforcing increasingly tough United Nations resolutions on North Korea, though it has also said what it terms "normal" trade and ordinary North Koreans should not be affected.

In an interview with MSNBC's Hugh Hewitt that aired Saturday, McMaster said Trump has been "deeply briefed" on the strategy on North Korea.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, meeting with North Korea's top diplomat during the gathering in Manila, urged the North to "maintain calm" despite the United Nations vote.

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"Do not violate the UN's decision or provoke global society's goodwill by conducting missile launching or nuclear tests", Wang warned the North.

Tillerson did not meet with North Korea's envoy, Ri Yong Ho. The North Korean delegation appeared to adopt a more passive approach than in past years.

North Korea would only face greater diplomatic isolation if it continues to test weapons and issue defiant statements while ditching offers of talks, South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said Tuesday. But he says it won't be a matter of a mere 30-day pause leading to the USA being willing to talk.

"The best signal that North Korea can give us that they are prepared to talk would be to stop these missile launches", said Tillerson, adding that "other means of communications" were open to Pyongyang.

"We will be monitoring that carefully and certainly having conversations with any and all that we see who may not be fully embracing not just the spirit of those sanctions but the operational execution of those sanctions", Tillerson said.

The Latest on developments on efforts to ratchet up pressure on North Korea over its nuclear program.

The U.S. has been conducting military exercises with South Korea in waters surrounding the Korean peninsula.

Jay Lefkowitz, a former US special envoy on human rights in North Korea, said China's efforts were encouraging but he questioned the value.

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