Tags: Donald Trump | North Korea | Trump Administration | China | diplomacy | nuclear weapons | George Mitchell

George Mitchell: US Should Not Brace for China on NKorea

Image: George Mitchell: US Should Not Brace for China on NKorea
Former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell (AP Photo/Rex Features)

By    |   Wednesday, 21 Jun 2017 05:07 PM

Former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell on Wednesday cautioned the Trump administration to not put all of its hope in China when it comes to dealing with North Korea.

"It's a difficult issue with no easy answer, no course of action has been successful so far in deterring them," Mitchell, 83, who represented Maine and served as Senate Democratic leader from 1989 to 1995, told Brooke Baldwin on CNN.

"We should seek Chinese assistance, but I think it's a mistake to think that China is going to solve the problem for us."

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Wednesday the U.S. was pressuring Beijing to pressure North Korea to rein in its nuclear and missile programs in high-level talks in Washington.

The session came a day after President Donald Trump tweeted Chinese efforts to use its leverage with Pyongyang had failed, raising new doubts about his administration's strategy for countering the threat from North Korea.

Mitchell said China's reluctance to press North Korea is because "the strategic interests of the United States and China are diametrically opposite with respect to the Korean peninsula.

"We would like to see a unified Korea with a democratic system. The Chinese don't want that.

"They don't want this regime to be as unstable and disruptive as it is, but the last thing they want is a unified democracy on the Korean peninsula," he told Baldwin.

"That would place a major American ally and American troops on their border."

Reuters contributed to this report.

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Former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell on Wednesday cautioned the Trump administration to not put all of its hope in China when it comes to dealing with North Korea.
China, diplomacy, nuclear weapons, George Mitchell
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2017-07-21
Wednesday, 21 Jun 2017 05:07 PM
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