Tue, Dec 05, 2017 - Page 3 News List

US must pressure China on N Korea: US ex-official

Staff writer, with CNA

The US should step up efforts to encourage China to cooperate in reining in North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, a former US official said, adding that it can start by deepening ties with Taiwan.

The North’s missile test on Tuesday last week showed that China “has not delivered on North Korea” as Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) has promised, Institute for Korean-American Studies fellow Joseph Bosco said in an article titled “There have to be consequences for China” published on Wednesday on the Web site RealClearWorld.

Instead, China “continues to deliver for North Korea,” undermining the UN Security Council sanctions for which it voted, he said.

China has parlayed its leverage over North Korea into leverage over the West, which has granted China immunity regarding its violations of international law on trade, currency, intellectual property, human rights, Taiwan, and maritime and aviation security, Bosco said.

When it comes to these issues, the West’s hands are tied, because it needs China’s cooperation to face the North Korea threat, Bosco said, adding that efforts to address the issue “must now be directed at China.”

“We still do need China on North Korea, but Washington needs to up its game to get that critical cooperation,” said Bosco, who served as director for China in the US secretary of defense’s office from 2005 to 2006.

The US can “start by picking up the Taiwan thread” that US President Donald Trump pulled on when he on Dec. 2 last year accepted a telephone call from President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) to congratulate him on his election victory, Bosco said.

In taking the call, Trump told China that “he does not regard as sacrosanct the ‘one China’ policy,” let alone care for Beijing’s distorted “one China” principle, he said.

There are myriad ways the Trump administration can deepen its relationship with Taiwan on diplomatic, economic and military fronts, he said.

For example, more frequent interactions between the two nations and visits by higher-level officials is essential, he said.

Despite the personal chemistry that has developed between Trump and Xi, Trump should make it clear to his Chinese counterpart that “we hold his government’s policies responsible for allowing the situation to come to this,” Bosco said.

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