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Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Chinese media: Trump is ‘wrong’ to assume China can handle North Korea

Chinese media: Trump is ‘wrong’ to assume China can handle North Korea

U.S. President Donald Trump is “wrong” to assume China can single-handedly deal with North Korea, a Chinese state newspaper wrote on Wednesday.

A “fragile solidarity’’ that appeared to have formed regarding the nuclear threat from North Korea “has already crumbled’’ as “the apportioning of blame has re-surged’’ after North Korea’s latest ballistic missile test on Friday, said the China Daily editorial.

On Saturday, Trump tweeted that he was “very disappointed in China’’ for not doing enough to intervene with North Korea.

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“China could easily solve this problem,” Trump said, adding that “they do nothing for us with North Korea, just talk.”

The state media outlet said: “Beijing has every reason to feel unfairly burdened with a task that is obviously beyond it, especially as it has been working diligently to broker a peaceful resolution to the crisis.”

Trump’s threat to increase trade pressure on China because of the North Korean issue shows that the U.S. and China “are moving further apart rather than coming together,’’ the editorial said.

A Chinese state medium, which is considered an informal voice for the government, had in the past published more strongly-worded reactions to Trump’s statements, whereas the Chinese Foreign Ministry usually sticks to stern and brief statements.

In contrast to Trump’s weekend statements, U.S. Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, on Tuesday said the U.S. does not blame China for the North Korean issue.

Tillerson said the U.S. wants North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons programme, but is not seeking regime change in the reclusive nation or military action against Pyongyang.

“We’re trying to convey to the North Koreans, we are not your enemy. We’re not your threat, but you are presenting an unacceptable threat to us, and we have to respond,” Tillerson said.

The U.S. would someday be willing to hold talks with North Korea, but in the meantime would continue to put greater pressure on the regime, he said.

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In a rare public appearance at the U.S. State Department in Washington, Tillerson said a dialogue would not be useful if North Korea was to maintain its nuclear weapons.

Tillerson called on China to use its influence to put pressure on the regime.

The White House meanwhile said it was “weighing all options” but would not broadcast what action it might take.

North Korea on Friday conducted a second test of an intercontinental ballistic missile that could give it the capability to hit targets in the U.S.

The launch, along with other missile and nuclear tests, has drawn condemnation from its Asian neighbours and the U.S.(dpa/NAN)

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