On Sunday, during an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation”, United States Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, said that China also understands the dangerous nature of North Korea’s nuclear program. Moreover, the Asian giant is ready to take action in order to stop it. Tillerson also talked about North Korea’s situation. More precisely, as it was discussed by president Donald Trump and Chinese president Xi Jinping, during last week’s summit.
Rex Tillerson talks
According to the Secretary of State, the Chinese president has begun to understand the gravity of North Korea’s actions. Also, he now acknowledges how North Korea might affect his country’s interests, too. Apart from the social consequences that came with supporting Kim Jong-un, Xi Jinping understood that the safety of his own people is currently at risk, telling the Secretary of State that China must take action in order to ensure the safety of the people. He did not offer any details in regards to what this action might or should be. However, last month, when he was in Seoul, Tillerson stated that his country would even take into account military action. This if North Korea’s passes a certain barrier and it provokes the United States in any way.
Still, even with those recent remarks of the Secretary of State, China has not changed its approach in what concerns the country’s relationship with Pyongyang. Even after this very important summit, the situation does not seem to change. After the meeting of the two leaders, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs failed to even mention North Korea’s name in two different statements. On Monday, a ministry spokeswoman delivered the usual Beijing script. It did not make any notable changes or mention any intention to take action against North Korea’s nuclear program.
China in the middle
Since the beginning of the year, China has been encouraging both the United States and North Korea to stop any conflict and try to find common ground. The Asian giant asked Pyongyang to suspend the nuclear program and missile tests. At the same time, it asked the United States to stop provoking North Korea. The American government has been conducting some military exercises with South Korea which antagonized the North Korean leaders.
Rex Tillerson’s statement came right as the United States was sending an aircraft carrier strike group to the waters nearby the Korean Peninsula. According to a defense official, the United States sent the USS Carl Vinson group as a response to North Korea’s provocations. Initially, Vinson should have gone straight to Australia when it left Singapore, on Saturday. However, it headed towards South Korea instead.
Meanwhile, Japan, which also witnessed North Korean missile tests land about 200 miles from its coast, praised the United States’ action. It is worth noting that on April 15, North Korea celebrates the birth of the late leader Kim Il Sung. He was current leader Kim Jong Un’s grandfather. Rumor has it that the country might test some missiles or even a nuclear device, in order to mark the event. We will see what North Korea’s next move will be. Especially after the United States sent the aircraft carrier strike group to the Korean Peninsula.
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