U.S. to suggest intercepting North Korea ships to allies at Vancouver meeting

Frederick Owens
January 13, 2018

"China is very reluctant to attend meetings about North Korea that don't include North Korea".

Mr. Tillerson is slated to co-host with Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland.

U.S. State Department officials confirmed that China and Russian Federation were not invited to Tuesday's meeting, which Canada is co-hosting with the U.S.in response to North Korea's recent nuclear and ballistic missile tests.

After China's foreign minister issued a statement this week that heavily criticized the January 16 meeting, U.S. State Department Under Secretary Steve Goldstein told journalists Thursday that "no", China is not invited.

Representatives of the countries that sent troops or other military support to the United Nations -backed effort to repel North Korean forces after the 1950 invasion of South Korea will attend. Asked whether this meant China had been invited, with the blessing of the USA, he said "yes".

A different official, asking not to have the information attributed to them, said that "we did not expect China to attend this meeting".

According to the ministry, the two diplomats discussed the situation on the Korean Peninsula.

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"Like the global community, we hope that the United States and North Korea will take the opposite direction and take meaningful steps towards dialogue and engagement", he added.

He argued the resolution of the problem should be achieved through such frameworks as the suspended 6-party talks on the North's nuclear program and the UN Security Council, which involve North Korea and China.

The ministers will discuss steps to thwart North Korea's evasion of sanctions, including through maritime interdiction, State Department Director of Policy Planning Brian Hook said in a press briefing.

"China is working with us", he said.

Japan's government has also raised questions about the conference, including why Colombia and Greece were invited when they have no real role these days in the region.

North Korea and South Korea engaged with each other for the first time in two years Tuesday, meeting on the topic of the Winter Olympics being held in the south next month.

Lieutenant General In-Bum Chun, one of South Korea's most decorated military leaders in history, believes despite China's close trade ties with North Korea, the Kim regime is not afraid of angering Beijing.

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