A senior foreign policy adviser to Chinese President Xi Jinping stressed the importance of relations with South Korea on Friday as the two countries attempt to mend a rift in ties over the deployment of a USA missile-defense system to guard against North Korean threats. However, he stressed the need for a peaceful resolution by working through the United Nations with countries including China, the North's traditional ally and benefactor.
As well as clouding efforts to rein in North Korea's nuclear ambitions, the THAAD deployment has also led to recriminations from Beijing against South Korean companies. The U.S.is looking ahead toward a decisive battleground in its bid to destroy the Islamic State group, even as U.S. -backed local forces must still finish the fight for the extremists' two main strongholds in Iraq and Syria.
North Korea has vowed to develop a missile mounted with a nuclear warhead that can strike the mainland United States, saying the programme is necessary to counter USA aggression.
North Korean state media reported the election of the South's new left-leaning president Moon Jae-In after a two-day delay, but at unusual length.
North Korea and the rich, democratic South are technically still at war because their 1950-53 conflict ended in a truce, not a peace treaty.
Trump has said "a major, major conflict" with North Korea is possible and all options are on the table but that he wanted to resolve the crisis diplomatically, possibly through the extended use of economic sanctions.
The US has deployed the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) system in South Korea to defend against threats from North Korea. South Korean businesses have faced boycotts, especially the retail group Lotte which provided the land on which the system is being constructed.
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The position is different from an independent counsel, the role in which Ken Starr investigated Bill Clinton throughout the 1990s. Trump himself had already contradicted that explanation, telling interviewers earlier that he had already chose to dismiss Comey.
North Korea conducted its latest ballistic missile test on Sunday in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions, saying it was a test of its capability to carry a "large-size heavy nuclear warhead".
"It is ridiculous", Kim In-Ryong, North Korea's deputy ambassador to the United Nations, told reporters, suggesting Washington and Seoul were behind the allegation.
Tillerson also called on the North to trust the US for once.
But a senior North Korean diplomat has said Pyongyang is also open to having talks with Washington under the right conditions.
South Korea's new president launched worldwide efforts to defuse tension over North Korea's weapons development on Thursday, urging both dialogue and sanctions while also aiming to ease Chinese anger about a United States anti-missile system.
However, Lee was quoted by Xinhua as saying that South Korea "understood China's major concerns and was ready to strengthen coordination with China to remove any obstacles to the development of bilateral ties".
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