Less than a week ago, the world seemed to be on the edge of a nuclear confrontation or at least a bloody military conflict in East Asia.
What a difference a few days make.
After a weekend filled with a series of conciliatory statements from China, some of them downright surprising, the situation with North Korea seems to be less tense right now, which could be construed as a major win for the Trump team.
To be specific, the big move came Monday as China agreed to ban imports of North Korean iron, lead, and coal as part of new U.N. sanctions on Pyongyang. That’s hitting Kim Jon Un’s regime where it hurts.
But there was also the statement in the Chinese-run state newspaper Global Times on Friday that said that if North Korea attacks the U.S., China should remain neutral. In other words, they’d be on their own.
READ FROM SOURCE: https://www.cnbc.com/2017/08/14/in-north-korea-crisis-china-hands-trump-a-win-commentary.html
North Korea took its turn Saturday in the country’s escalating, back-and-fourth with President Trump, with the state-run newspaper saying leader Kim Jung Un’s revolutionary army is “capable of fighting any war the U.S. wants.”
The assertion was made in an editorial that also states the Paektusan army is now “on the standby to launch fire into its mainland, waiting for an order of final attack.”
Go To Source: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/08/12/n-korea-on-standby-to-launch-state-run-paper-says-in-response-to-trumps-latest-warnings.html
Hamburg, Germany (CNN)President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin met for over two hours Friday afternoon, discussing interference in US elections and ending with an agreement on curbing violence in Syria.
But a diplomatic dust-up immediately broke out after the session when Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Trump accepted Putin’s assurances there was no Russian involvement in the 2016 American election.
WATCH VIDEO: http://edition.cnn.com/2017/07/07/politics/trump-putin-meeting/index.html
Late night celebrated “Comey Day” with jokes.
Stephen Colbert kicked off Thursday night’s broadcast of CBS’ “The Late Show” by wishing everyone a “Happy St. Comey’s Day” following former FBI chief James Comey’s anticipated testimony to Congress regarding his interactions with President Donald Trump.
“Everybody was looking forward to the former FBI director testifying about all the juicy details of his meetings with Donald Trump,” Colbert said. “Remember, Comey wrote everything down and all his memos are going to be collected in his new children’s book, ‘James and the Guilty Orange.'”
During his opening monologue, Colbert also made light of many parts of the hearing, from Comey’s height to the former FBI director saying Trump’s comments about him and the FBI were “lies, plain and simple.”
GOTTA WATCH IN FULL: http://money.cnn.com/2017/06/09/media/james-comey-stephen-colbert-seth-meyers-late-night/index.html
MANILA, Philippines (3rd UPDATE) – The tense situation in the Korean Peninsula and the South China Sea dispute were among the topics tackled by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and Chinese President Xi Jinping during their phone call on Wednesday, May 3.
Xi called Duterte at around 4 pm on Wednesday, said the Palace. Their conversation lasted around 26 minutes.
Xi supposedly spoke of a “channel of dialogue and consultation” on the South China Sea issue during the conversation, according to Chinese state-run news agency Xinhua.
The two leaders also “exchanged views” on the situation in the Korean Peninsula.
Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs spokesman Robespierre Bolivar said Duterte “referred to China’s important role in promoting peace [in] the Korean Peninsula.”
In a chance interview on Monday, May 1, Duterte said he believes China could serve as a bridge between the US and North Korea.
“Our greatest chance there of getting some dialogue with America and North Korea would be through the intercession of China,” he said.
READ FROM FULLS SOURCE ARTICLE: http://www.rappler.com/nation/168771-duterte-xi-jinping-phone-calldut
(CNN)North Korea has lashed out at the US after it conducted joint bomber drills with the South Korean air force, accusing it of reckless provocation.
Pyongyang described the exercise, which involved two B1-B bombers, as as a “nuclear bomb-dropping drill” that made nuclear war more likely. North Korean state media described US President Donald Trump as a “warmonger”.
The outburst came as the officials said that a controversial US missile defense system was up and running in South Korea — albeit in a limited capacity. That announcement came a week before presidential elections in South Korea that are expected to bring in a government critical of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system, known as THAAD.
When President Donald Trump called President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines on Saturday (Sunday AEDT), White House officials saw it as part of a routine diplomatic outreach to Southeast Asian leaders. Trump, characteristically, had his own ideas.
During their “very friendly conversation”, the administration said in a late-night statement, Trump invited Duterte, an authoritarian leader accused of ordering extrajudicial killings of drug suspects in the Philippines, to visit him at the White House.
Now, the administration is bracing for an avalanche of criticism from human rights groups. Two senior officials said they expected the State Department and the National Security Council, both of which were caught off guard by the invitation, to raise objections internally.
The White House disclosed the news on a day when Trump fired up his supporters at a campaign-style rally in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The timing of the announcement – after a speech that was a grievance-filled jeremiad – encapsulated this president after 100 days in office: still ready to say and do things that leave people, even on his staff, slack-jawed.
Read more: http://www.afr.com/news/politics/world/white-house-officials-brace-for-anger-at-duterte-invitation-20170501-gvwgcu#ixzz4foNEuEiz
Follow us: @FinancialReview on Twitter | financialreview on Facebook
“By essentially endorsing Duterte’s murderous war on drugs, Trump is now morally complicit in future killings,” said John Sifton, the Asia director of Human Rights Watch. “Although the traits of his personality likely make it impossible, Trump should be ashamed of himself.”
Administration officials said the call to Mr. Duterte was one of several to Southeast Asian leaders that the White House arranged after picking up signs that they felt neglected because of Mr. Trump’s intense focus on China, Japan and tensions over North Korea. On Sunday, Mr. Trump spoke to the prime ministers of Singapore and Thailand.
Mr. Duterte’s toxic reputation had already given pause to some in the White House. The Philippines is to host a summit meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in November, and officials said there was a brief debate about whether Mr. Trump should attend.
It is not even clear, given the accusations of human rights abuses against him, that Mr. Duterte, were he not a head of state, would be granted a visa to the United States, according to human rights advocates.
READ FROM FULL SOURCE ARTICLE: https://www.msn.com/en-nz/news/world/trump%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%98very-friendly%E2%80%99-talk-with-duterte-stuns-aides-and-critics-alike/ar-BBAzdu2