The highest US diplomat mentioned Beijing is in a “distinctive place” to affect the DPRK
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken mentioned he referred to as on China to assist push North Korea to finish its “harmful conduct” and have interaction with Washington throughout his go to to the Folks’s Republic this week.
Addressing reporters after assembly with Chinese language President Xi Jinping earlier on Monday, Blinken mentioned he had “strong” discussions with officers throughout his two-day journey to Beijing, together with about North Korea’s “more and more reckless actions and rhetoric.”
“All members of the worldwide neighborhood have an curiosity in encouraging the DPRK to behave responsibly, to cease launching missiles, to start out participating on its nuclear program,” he mentioned on the US Embassy in Beijing, including “China is in a novel place to press Pyongyang to interact in dialogue and to finish its harmful conduct.”
Whereas Blinken didn’t elaborate on what he hoped Beijing might accomplish with respect to North Korea, US officers have beforehand steered that China has the power to affect Pyongyang’s insurance policies. Following his first face-to-face sit-down with Xi final yr, President Joe Biden argued the Folks’s Republic had an “obligation” to dissuade its neighbor from future nuclear trials, warning that Washington would take “defensive” motion within the occasion of one other take a look at.
South Korea has made comparable statements, with President Yoon Suk-yeol additionally stating final yr that “China has the aptitude to affect North Korea” and a “duty to interact within the course of.” He claimed the denuclearization of the DPRK can be in Beijing’s personal curiosity, echoing Washington’s long-held place.
Tensions between the USA and North Korea have soared during the last yr, with US forces launching a flurry of joint navy drills with Seoul, which Pyongyang has denounced as rehearsal for an invasion. The DPRK has responded with a number of weapons exams – the variety of which hit document ranges final yr – and insists it has the fitting to develop its navy with out interference from the US, together with its nuclear arsenal.
Whereas the US and its regional allies have blamed North Korea for the latest spike in hostilities, Chinese language officers have steadily criticized American wargames held on the Korean Peninsula, saying the workouts solely serve to inflame the scenario and provoke more and more harsh reactions from Pyongyang.