President Trump talked to leaders of both China and Japan on Monday as tensions on the Korean Peninsula have boiled over and North Korea appears ready for an ICBM launch.
Trump spoke by phone with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Japan’s military claimed it sent destroyers to join the USS Carl Vinson carrier group on its way to North Korea’s doorstep — and South Korea was in talks to take part as well, Reuters reported.
North Korea called the carrier group’s approach “an extremely dangerous act by those who plan a nuclear war to invade,” according to a commentary in the ruling Workers’ Party newspaper Rodong Sinmun. “What’s only laid for aggressors is dead bodies.”
Xi told Trump that China strongly opposed North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and hoped “all parties will exercise restraint and avoid aggravating the situation,” according to Chinese broadcaster CCTV. Trump hopes China could increase pressure on its isolated ally instead of using military options or trying to overthrow Kim Jong Un’s regime.
Trump and Abe agreed to urge North Korea to refrain from provocative actions.
“The North Korean nuclear and missile problem is an extremely serious security threat to not only the international community but also our country,” Abe told reporters after the phone call with Trump.