China talks focusing on North Korean threat

The United States and China agreed Wednesday that companies of the two countries should not do business with U.N. -blacklisted North Korean entities, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said as he urged Beijing to exert "much greater pressure" on Pyongyang.

Geng said China remains committed to banishing nuclear weapons from the Korean Peninsula and working with the US and others on restarting talks over the issue.

Susan Thornton, the senior USA diplomat for East Asia, said North Korea would get "top billing".

Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi (1st R) co-chairs a diplomatic and security dialogue with U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (1st L) and Secretary of Defense James Mattis (2nd L) as Fang Fenghui (2nd R), a member of China's Central Military Commission (CMC) and chief of the CMC Joint Staff Department, also participates in the dialogue in Washington D.C., the United States, on June 21, 2017. "At least I know China tried!"

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Trump has been counting on China to use its economic leverage with the government of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un as American concern grows over the North's acceleration toward having a nuclear missile that can strike the US mainland.

But while China has tightened controls on trade in North Korean coal, many experts say it is not ready to truly enforce any sanctions that might threaten the stability of its unpredictable neighbor.

At the dialogue, China also reiterated its opposition to the deployment of the U.S. Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile defense system in South Korea, saying such deployment should be halted and revoked.

- Prisoner in a coma -Last week, what initially seemed a gesture of goodwill by Pyongyang - the release of a detained U.S. tourist - turned sour when it was revealed that 22-year-old Otto Warmbier had been brain damaged and in a coma for some time.

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North Korea regarded his alleged act as a "significant offense" against their sovereignty, Revere said. "They said they understood".

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said on Tuesday that China will work with the United States for positive results at the diplomatic and security dialogue.

The discussions replace a strategic and economic dialogue held annually under the Obama administration. This year's edition separates out the security aspects.

But tensions remain - particularly over China's building of artificial islands in disputed South China Sea waters - and the White House dearly wants Beijing to rein in Kim Jong-Un's isolated North Korean regime.

Like past presidents, Trump is finding the USA has limited scope for punishing North Korea, particularly over the arrest of US citizens.

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"If North Korea really does have respect for the concerns of President Xi, would it have tested its military hardware on the opening day of the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing?" That would only slightly add to the North's isolation and loss of revenue. -Chinese talks in Washington. Such a move risks fraying relations between the world's two biggest economies. The plan has already produced agreements for China to buy USA beef and natural gas.

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