Mike Pompeo’s visit to China kicks off with frosty exchange

10 October, 2018, 04:40 | Author: Bert Pena
  • Kim, Pompeo agree to 2nd US-North Korea summit 'at earliest date'

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo yesterday cited "fundamental disagreement" with Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi (王毅) during a testy exchange in Beijing that highlighted rising tensions between the world's two largest economies.

"We require that the USA stop such misguided actions", Mr. Wang demanded during an official round of talks with Mr. Pompeo, while listing the trade war and Washington's shifting stance on Taiwan as some of the points of aggravated friction between the two countries.

After a previous visit to Pyongyang in July, Pompeo had said the two foes made progress on key issues - but within hours of his departure the North condemned "gangster-like" demands from the United States, raising questions over how much the two sides really saw eye to eye.

Wang said cooperation should be the only choice for China and the USA, but denied Beijing was interfering in United States domestic affairs.

Kim Jong-un and Mr Pompeo held talks about President Trump's plans and future relations with North Korea.

But Kim Il Sung, the North's late founding leader and the current ruler's grandfather, viewed Christianity as a threat to his authoritarian rule and eradicated it through executions and labor camps.

Unlike a similar trip in June, Chinese President Xi Jinping granted no audience to the US secretary of state.

Mr Pompeo told reporters in Pyongyang the two "had a great, great visit" and that Mr Trump sent his regards.

Trump met Kim in Singapore in June for the first-ever summit between the two countries, resulting in what critics say was only a vague commitment by Kim towards denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.

Even so, Pompeo said both sides were "pretty close" to agreement on the details of a second summit, which Kim proposed to U.S. President Donald Trump in a letter last month.

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Prior to Pompeo's visit to North Korea, he met with Japan Foreign Minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo.

Trump and Kim held an historic first summit in Singapore on June 12 at which Kim pledged to work toward denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

"I'd love to remove them, but we have to get something for doing it", Trump said.

Trump said "eventually we're going to have lots of meetings on U.S. soil and on their soil by the way".

Kim said the bilateral dialogue would continue to develop "based on the deep confidence between the two leaders", and expressed gratitude to Trump for making a honest effort to implement the agreement made at their June summit, KCNA said.

"Recently, as the USA side has been constantly escalating trade friction toward China, it has also adopted a series of actions on the Taiwan issue that harm China's rights and interests, and has made groundless criticism of China's domestic and foreign policies", Wang said at a joint appearance with Pompeo.

Mr Kim's invitation will be formally delivered by President Moon of South Korea when he visits the Vatican.

Kim also expressed the belief that - "based on the deep confidence between the top leaders of the two countries" - dialogue and negotiations would continue to develop favorably and a "good program" for a second summit would be developed.

During a conversation with the visiting archbishop, Kim urged him to let the Vatican know his intention to build peace, according to Moon's spokesman.

The South Korean president hopes the summit will allow a new order to be created throughout the Korean peninsula, eventually leading into Northeast Asia.

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