US worries Russia could step up North Korea support to fill China void

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley testifies to the House Appropriations State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs Subcommittee on the budget for the U.N. in Washington, D.C., U.S., June 27, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

By Michelle Nichols | UNITED NATIONS Tue Jun 27, 2017 | 5:26pm EDT

As the United States pressures China to enforce United Nations sanctions on its ally North Korea, Washington is concerned that Russia could provide support to Pyongyang and fill any vacuum left by Beijing, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said on Tuesday.

“I’m concerned that Russia may backfill North Korea,” Haley told U.S. lawmakers in Washington. “We don’t have proof of that, but we are watching that carefully.”

While Washington has urged countries to downgrade ties with Pyongyang over its nuclear and ballistic missile programs, a cross-border ferry service was launched in May between North Korea and neighboring Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin has said the world should talk to, rather than threaten, North Korea.

“We just need to keep the pressure on China, we need to keep our eyes on Russia, and we need to continue to let the North Korea regime know we are not looking for regime change … we just want them to stop the nuclear activity,” Haley said.

The U.N. Security Council first imposed sanctions on North Korea in 2006 over its ballistic missile and nuclear programs and has ratcheted up the measures in response to five nuclear tests and two long-range missile launches. The government in Pyongyang is threatening a sixth nuclear test.

The Trump administration has been pressing China aggressively to rein in its reclusive neighbor, warning that all options are on the table if Pyongyang persists with its nuclear and missile development programs.

Beijing has repeatedly said its influence on North Korea is limited and that it is doing all it can, but U.S. President Donald Trump last week said China’s efforts had failed.

The United States has struggled to slow North Korea’s programs, which have become a security priority given Pyongyang’s vow to develop a nuclear-tipped missile capable of hitting the U.S. mainland.

“The pressure on China can’t stop,” Haley said. “We have to have China doing what they’re supposed to. At the same time all other countries need to make sure they’re enforcing the sanctions that the Security Council has already put in place.”

Trump, increasingly frustrated with China over its inaction on North Korea and bilateral trade issues, is now considering possible trade actions against Beijing, senior administration officials told Reuters.

The United States also plans to place China on its global list of worst offenders in human trafficking and forced labor, sources said, a step that could aggravate tensions with Beijing.

(Additional reporting by Patricia Zengerle, editing by G Crosse)

Source: Reuters “US worries Russia could step up North Korea support to fill China void”

Note: This is Reuters’ report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.


6 Comments on “US worries Russia could step up North Korea support to fill China void”

  1. Red Flag says:

    North Korea might attack South Korea by mistake. Many wars have happened when one side has miscalculated and attacked a neighboring country and regretted doing so.


    • steve says:

      How would Nth Korea miscalculated for attacking Sth Korea and then regret without any consequences from US and Sth Koreans. The North is nuclear armed. Would the North attack Sth Korea with nuclear arms and then call it a mistake and regret.


    • Max says:

      Why mistake? South Korea does NOT belong to Washington. It belongs to the Korean people and the North Koreans fought a war of nationalism on behalf of the Korean people. They had a right to rule Korea, after the fierce resistance they had put up against the colonialist Japanese. What right had Washington to just walk in and take over South Korea in terms of suzerainty? The Korean people did NOT gave them the right. So stop your fear mongering, “Red Bull”.


    • Assassin says:

      Sounds like Washington intends creating a false flag incident to justify a war or a strike against North Korea. And Red “Bull” is its mouthpiece.


  2. Simon says:

    Chna should call time on Trump’s state visit. No countris wanted him to visit , even close ally Britain said he is not welcome becasue he will be met with mass protests.
    America is no longer in a position to hand out ratings to other countries given the fact they have surrendered global leadership.


  3. Steve says:

    In a worst case scenario there wont be any US military intervention against Nth Korea. Its doubtful that China and Russia would allow their back door neighbour be occupied by USA. There will be massive destruction between Nth and Sth Korea. President Putin is correct that US should stop threatening Nth Korea. Over the years, China has warned the US to abandon its naval exercise with Sth Korea which threatens the security of its Northern brethen. US is the instigator, Nth Korea developed its nuclear program due to US threats. During the Presidency of Bill Clinton, he issued nuclear threats against the Nth but Sth Korean President then refused the suggestion. As it stands Nth Korea will never abandon its nuclear arms. If Russia backfill Nth Korea including military armaments, the Korean peninsula will be a rising volcano.

    Meantime, China should rollup its sleeves ready to counter US sanctions.