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China's top diplomat issued stern warning to North Korea, Seoul says

By Elizabeth Shim
China's top diplomat issued stern warning to North Korea, Seoul says
North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho (back) and China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi (front) met in Manila, Philippines to discuss Pyongyang’s nuclear provocations. File Photo by Francis R. Malasig/EPA

Aug. 21 (UPI) -- China's top diplomat issued a stern warning to North Korea and urged the reclusive state to end provocations.

According to a report from Seoul's foreign ministry, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with his North Korea counterpart Ri Yong Ho on Aug. 6, during the ASEAN Regional Forum on security.

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Wang urged Pyongyang's top diplomat to stop conducting weapons tests.

According to South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-hwa, Wang relayed the information on the meeting to Seoul.

A week later China stated it was ready to implement United Nations Security Council sanctions Resolution 2371.

South Korea's foreign ministry also said a phone call between U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping played an important role in easing tensions that began with an exchange of verbal threats between Trump and North Korea state media, which included a threat from Pyongyang to lay siege to Guam.

Ri had said North Korea nuclear weapons are non-negotiable, but during the ASEAN summit requested Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono for a meeting, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported last week.

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Kono in turn requested Ri to take firm steps to address the issue of abducted Japanese nationals.

Tokyo is seeking the return of kidnapped Japanese citizens that Pyongyang says are no longer in North Korea custody.

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