When U.S. President Donald Trump returned from his 12-day tour to Asia he made much of his newfound friendship with China’s President Xi Jinping. Trump took to his favorite communications medium, Twitter, to claim that the mainstream media “hated the fact” that he has developed a “great relationship with world leaders like Xi Jinping.” President Trump was also celebrating the fact that he had apparently persuaded President Xi to send a diplomatic envoy to North Korea. Trump has frequently cited China as the key to solving the conflict between the U.S. and North Korea.
China is North Korea’s major trading partner and only real ally, so Trump was hoping that China could persuade Kim Jong-un to abandon its nuclear weapons program. Trump has made it clear that he will accept nothing less than the “total denuclearization” of North Korea. As reported by the Inquisitr last week, President Trump had been in Washington for less than 24 hours before China contradicted him on the supposedly joint solution to the North Korean issue.
In essence, Trump wants North Korea to stop its nuclear program, and there is no room for negotiation. China, on the other hand, favors a “freeze-for-freeze” agreement where North Korea halts its development of nuclear missiles, whilst the U.S. rolls back its buildup of military assets in the region.
In the end, neither President Trump or China’s “solution” matters to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. As reported by Newsweek, the North Korean despot refused to meet with the Chinese envoy, something they call “a slap in the face for China.” According to the South China Morning Post, Kim Jong-un’s refusal to meet with Xi Jinping’s envoy was “a deliberate snub to Xi,” designed to show that China has limited influence over North Korea.
As reported by the Huffington Post, President Trump designated North Korea as a “state sponsor of terrorism” earlier this week. They report that Tong Zhao, a fellow at the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy in Beijing, warns that Trump’s move undermines the possibility of a diplomatic solution to the North Korea situation.
“I am afraid that this move may further convince Pyongyang that the United States adopts hostile policies against North Korea and Washington has no intentions to establish a normal relationship.”
“This could greatly undermine the prospect of having a diplomatic solution over the [North] Korean nuclear crisis.”
It would seem that President Trump’s hopes for a solution are once again to be thwarted by North Korea. If Kim Jong-un did deliberately snub China’s envoy, and if Trump has undermined diplomatic efforts, then there is little hope of a solution to the North Korean crisis, at least in the short term.
[Featured Image by Thomas Peter/AP Images]