After terse public exchanges this week, each proclaiming the other is not working hard enough on ‘solving’ the Kim Jong Un ‘situation’, Chinese state media said on Saturday, reporting the results of high level talks in Washington this week, that China and the United States agreed that efforts to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula should be “complete, verifiable and irreversible.”
The week started off tense, with the President tweeting that “while I greatly appreciate the efforts of President Xi & China to help with North Korea, it has not worked out. At least I know China tried!“
While I greatly appreciate the efforts of President Xi & China to help with North Korea, it has not worked out. At least I know China tried!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 20, 2017
Which received a quick response from China…
China has “played an important and constructive role” in seeking peace on the Korean peninsula, Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told reporters in Beijing.
China strictly implements United Nations Security Council resolutions and isn’t the crux of the North Korean issue, he said.
But now, as Reuters reports,US and China have agreed on a path forward after high-level talks. U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had said on Thursday that the United States pressed China to ramp up economic and political pressure on North Korea, during his meeting with top Chinese diplomats and defense chiefs. China’s top diplomat Yang Jiechi and General Fang Fenghui met Tillerson and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis during the talks. Yang later met with U.S. President Donald Trump in the White House, where they also discussed North Korea, Xinhua reported.
“Both sides reaffirm that they will strive for the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” a consensus document released by the official Xinhua news agency said.
The consensus document also highlighted the need to fully and strictly hold to U.N. Security Council resolutions and push for dialogue and negotiation, which has long been China’s position on the issue.
Military-to-military exchanges should also be upgraded and mechanisms of notification established in order to cut the risks of “judgment errors” between the Chinese and U.S. militaries, the statement also said.
Chinese state media described the talks, the first of their kind with the Trump administration, as an upgrade in dialogue mechanisms between China and the United States, following on from President Xi Jinping’s meeting with Trump in Florida in April.