Mattis Praises China`s Efforts on North Korea

The U.S. and its allies strongly disagreed with China and Russian Federation on how to rein in North Korea's rapidly escalating nuclear and ballistic missile program, which Pyongyang says is aimed at developing a long-range missile capable of reaching the United States with a nuclear warhead.

After meeting with President Xi Jinping in April, Trump, who once accused China of "raping" the U.S., praised its leader as a "good man", saying it would be inappropriate to pressure Beijing while Washington is seeking its help with Pyongyang.

"We are still trying to figure out his [Trump's] policy in our region", said Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein.

Mattis also said the United States administration was pleased to see China working with them on ways to counter North Korea's continued weapons development, though he had harsh words for China regarding their activities in the South China Sea.

The new asset and travel freeze by this resolution target senior officials and its core military apparatus that are directly responsible for the regime's illicit nuclear and ballistic missile programs, South Korea ambassador to the UN, Cho Tae-Yul, told the council on Friday. The delegate, Michael Fullilove, citing Trump withdrawing from both the Paris agreement and the 12-nation trade deal known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership and repeatedly criticizing the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

"Once we have exhausted all possible alternatives, the Americans will do the right thing", Mattis added, paraphrasing a quotation by British wartime leader Winston Churchill.

The resolution slapped even more United Nations sanctions on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK or North Korea) and condemns the regime's continued proliferation of its nuclear and ballistic program.

China's territorial claims in the resource-rich South China Sea are contested by several nations.President Donald Trump and other senior United States officials have repeatedly stated that America would protect its interests in the South China Sea, a key shipping route.

One questioner asked if the U.S. president was an "unbeliever" in the rules-based regional order.

"Bear with us", Mattis said. "So we will still be there and we will be there with you". We will continue to fly, sail and operate wherever worldwide law allows and demonstrate resolve through operational presence in the South China Sea and beyond.

But he said the country's President Rodrigo Duterte "has a very clear view about resolving these issues in the Philippines by the defence and security agencies by the Philippines". But he stressed that China must follow through on pledges to de-nuclearize the Korean Peninsula through pressure on Pyongyang.

After meeting with President Xi Jinping in April, Trump, who once accused China of "raping" the U.S., praised its leader as a "good man", saying it would be inappropriate to pressure Beijing while Washington is seeking its help with Pyongyang.

Yet Mattis offers a positive and helpful tone for cooperation and peace in the Asia-Pacific region. However, the Security Council did vote unanimously to add 15 individuals and four entities linked to the North's nuclear and missile programs to a United Nations sanctions blacklist.

  • Leroy Wright