DIPLOMACY

China to U.S.: Stay Cool About North Korea

Lintao Zhang/Reuters

After ominous warnings from U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson about potential military action against North Korea on Friday, China called for a “coolheaded” approach to dealing with Pyongyang. In a joint news conference on Saturday with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Tillerson emphasized the need for unity with Beijing in dealing with North Korea. “We share a common view and a sense that tensions on the peninsula are quite high right now and that things have reached a rather dangerous level, and we’ve committed ourselves to doing everything we can to prevent any type of conflict from breaking out,” Tillerson said. China’s foreign minister agreed, but stressed the need to “stay committed to diplomatic means” in seeking a resolution. “We hope all parties, including our friends from the United States, could size up the situation in a coolheaded and comprehensive fashion, and arrive at a wise decision,” he said. His comments came as President Trump appeared to fan the flames on Twitter, lambasting China for doing “little to help” deal with North Korea “behaving very badly.” China has consistently called for dialogue in recent weeks, as North Korea tests the new U.S. administration, having recently conducted a new ballistic test-launch it said was a practice run for striking U.S. bases in Japan.