S.Korea proposes military talks with N.Korea on July 21

18 July, 2017, 10:07 | Author: Valerie Burke
  • Chinese trade with North Korea jumped 10.5% in the first half of this year, according to China Customs data

The timing and scope of the USA action will depend heavily on how China responds to pressure for tougher steps against North Korea when US and Chinese officials meet for a high-level economic dialogue in Washington Wednesday, the administration sources told Reuters. Kim Jong Il, meanwhile, sent his premier, spy chief and other top officials to Seoul for talks. They would also come roughly two weeks after North Korea conducted its latest missile test this year, launching an intercontinental ballistic missile that landed in the Sea of Japan.

She suggests more cooperation from countries like China, which she says isn't pulling its weight in stopping North Korea.

China said in February it would suspend coal imports from North Korea, potentially cutting off a major financial lifeline for Pyongyang, although analysts caution that Chinese figures should be viewed with some skepticism as they are sometimes manipulated for political purposes. Official talks between the sides have not been held since December 2015.

About 90 percent of North Korea's exports go to China, and coal has been the single biggest export item.

Since the July 4 ballistic missile test, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley has been pushing for fresh measures that may include further curbs on China's trade with North Korea. Previous releases of Chinese customs data showed that China bought the same amount of iron ore in the first five months of this year as it did in all of last year.

"It has become feasible to respond effectively to North Korean drones", the South Korean agency said.

However, the North's frequent missile tests, including the most recent one of an inter-continental ballistic missile, are in consistent violation of United Nations resolutions and has only served to alarm its neighbours and the US.

The Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of the North's ruling party, carried a commentary by a private writer, on Saturday saying it seemed "fortunate" as Moon included his government's committment to the landmark joint declarations signed at the inter-Korean summits in 2000 and 2007.

Moon, who took power in May, advocated dialogue with the nuclear-armed North as a means of bringing it to the negotiating table and vowed to play a more active role in global efforts to tame the South's unpredictable neighbour. In his words, "we need to see what sanctions are most successful".

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