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US calls China to end ‘business as usual’ with North Korea

US calls China to end ‘business as usual’ with North Korea

NEW YORK: Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday that China and the U.S. agreed that “business as usual” can’t continue with North Korea after Pyongyang conducted an alleged hydrogen bomb test.
Kerry said he spoke with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi and discussed options on how to respond to North Korea’s recent actions.
“China had a particular approach that it wanted to make, that we agreed and respected to give them space to implement that,” Kerry said during a press briefing.
China is considered North Korea’s main economic and diplomatic ally although relations between the two Asian nations have been strained in recent years.
The top export destination for North Korea is China to the tune of $2.7 billion annually, according to the Observatory of Economic Complexity.
Kerry said he would soon begin work on the upcoming ASEAN southeast Asian regional summit where the focus of his meetings would be on North Korea.
Kerry’s deputy, Tony Blinken, will also head to the region in a few days.
Meanwhile, a White House spokesman said there has not been any discussions with South Korean officials about the deployment of “a defensive antiballistic missile capability” to bolster Seoul’s defenses.
Still, Josh Earnest stressed, “we have been quite consistent in making clear that any sort of U.S. military capability that is deployed to the Korean peninsula is arrayed solely against the threat that is posed by the North Koreans”.
Those include the deployment of a THAAD anti-missile battery and at least one Aegis-equipped naval vessel to Guam, as well as radar systems in Japan and unspecified “additional capabilities” that have been deployed to Alaska.