U.S., China, to discuss North Korea provocations ahead of G20 meeting

WASHINGTON, Aug. 29 (UPI) — The United States and China are expected to meet to discuss North Korea‘s nuclear provocations a day before the G20 meeting.

Ben Rhodes, the White House deputy national security advisor, said Monday more pressure needs to be applied to North Korea, South Korean news agency Yonhap reported.

The meeting, to be held this Saturday in China, is to cover topics including climate change, the Iran nuclear deal and joint concerns regarding the Korean peninsula, according to the White House.

Rhodes also said China has been working together with the United States to further exert political and economic pressure on North Korea’s Kim Jong Un.

Beijing’s relations with Pyongyang have deteriorated since Kim fully assumed power, and the North Korean leader has yet to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

On Monday Rhodes did not rule out U.S. dialogue with North Korea, but only on the condition the country take sincere steps toward denuclearization.

More pressure needs to be applied to North Korea, in order for the country to change routes, and as long as North Korea shows no interest in denuclearization, the United States must maintains its responsibilities toward allies in the region, including Japan and South Korea, Rhodes said.

Japan, which condemned North Korean provocations last week, is also expected to discuss an ongoing concern regarding the presence of Chinese vessels near the disputed Senkaku islands, according to Japanese press reports.

Japanese Defense Minister Tomomi Inada is expected to discuss the issue with U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter on Sep. 13.

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