China sets conditions for start of talks on sea feud code

China sets conditions for start of talks on sea feud code

"In this regards, we strongly urge the DPRK to immediately comply fully with its obligations under all relevant UN Security Council resolutions", it said, referring to North Korea by its official name.

He said Japan took note of the adoption of the framework of the Code of Conduct (COC) in South China Sea by ASEAN and Chinese foreign ministers.

North Korea sees its weapons program as the key to preventing US-led attempts at regime change, and the July missile tests showed Pyongyang may have passed an important threshold in its quest to obtain the ability hit the U.S. with a nuclear warhead.

The new UNSC's sanctions include the full ban on the export of coal, iron and iron ore from the North Korea.

Following the foreign ministers meeting is Monday's annual ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), which gathers 27 foreign ministers - including those of Russia, Japan, South Korea, the United States, China and North Korea - to discuss Asian security issues.

"The leaders committed to fully implement all relevant resolutions and to urge the worldwide community to do so as well", the White House said.

Countries are prohibited from hiring new North Korean labourers, whose earnings are another source of revenue for leader Kim Jong Un's regime.

"The best signal that North Korea can give us that they are prepared to talk would be to stop these missile launches", said Tillerson, adding that "other means of communications" were open to Pyongyang.

"There were views that, how can we hear them out or confront them (North Korea) if they're not there?" he told reporters after a late-night discussion with his ASEAN counterparts.

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That the framework is broad and leaves wide scope for disagreement has critics raising doubts about how effective the COC will be.

Another diplomat said that wordings on the South China Sea issue to be included in the communique had not yet been finalized, with Vietnam reiterating its position that ASEAN should cite regional concern over China's land reclamation and construction of its man-made islands.

A final copy of the framework seen by The Associated Press also did not mention whether the code should be legally binding, which most ASEAN states demand but China opposes, or the extent of disputed areas to be covered by such a code.

Speaking to The Straits Times, Asean Secretary-General Le Luong Minh said: "A framework is a framework".

Reacting to criticisms that the code may end up as a toothless document, Mr Wang said: "As long as we put our signatures on them, we have to take on the responsibility and should abide by them". "But the framework will hopefully pave the way towards meaningful and substantive negotiations towards the conclusion of a COC".

The Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) has omitted references to China's most controversial activities in its joint communique, a draft reviewed by Reuters shows.

Tillerson's comments, made at a regional security forum in Manila, were the latest U.S. attempt to rein in Pyongyang's nuclear and missile program after months of tough talk from U.S. President Donald Trump.

Before the ASEAN countries came out with their statement on the South China Sea, the 10 ministers were divided over the issue, according to reports.

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