News / Asia

Kerry Seeks China's Help to Ease Tensions, Sea Disputes

China Can Do More on North Korea, Kerry Saysi
X
February 13, 2014 8:36 PM
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry travels to Beijing Friday where he says Chinese officials can do more to help convince North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons program. On Thursday, Kerry met with the South Korean president and foreign minister following the first high-level talks between the two Koreas in more than seven years.
China Can Do More on North Korea, Kerry Says
VOA News
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is in Beijing for talks aimed at encouraging Chinese leaders to put more pressure on ally North Korea to end its nuclear weapons program.

Kerry began his visit by meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing's Great Hall of the People. He also met other senior leaders, including Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

Afterwards, Kerry described his meeting with Xi as "very constructive" and "positive."

"We hope that 2014 will be a year of concrete progress in defining the new modern relationship, managing our differences effectively, and finding a way to cooperate practically wherever possible," said Kerry.

Kerry arrived in the Chinese capital early Friday from South Korea, where he met with President Park Geun-hye. The meeting came as North and South Korea held their highest-level talks in seven years.

In Seoul, Kerry said China has a unique and critical role in persuading Pyongyang to resume talks on its nuclear program. He acknowledged Beijing's help in recent months, but said China can do more as the leading supplier of fuel and banking services to North Korea.

The North quit the six-nation talks in 2009. It has since rebuilt some of its nuclear facilities and alarmed a host of regional and Western governments with several underground nuclear tests.

Responding to Kerry's comments, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying said Friday that Beijing has been putting forward its "best efforts" in dealing with Pyongyang.
 
"We have always believed the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula should be solved through the framework of the six-party talks. At the same time, we want to find a balanced solution to the legitimate and reasonable concerns of North Korea," said Hua.

Kerry is also expected to raise the issue of China's maritime disputes with its neighbors, which have sent Beijing's relations with Japan and others plummeting in recent months.

Washington has been critical of what it sees as China's attempts to gain control over contested parts of the East and South China Seas. Last week, U.S. officials called on China to clarify or amend its vast maritime claims, suggesting they may be inconsistent with international law.

In Seoul, Kerry reiterated that the disputed East China Sea islands claimed by both China and Japan fall under a treaty obligating the U.S. to defend Tokyo in the case of an attack. The comments were certain to anger Beijing, which has encouraged the U.S. to not take sides.

China has accused U.S. ally Japan of raising tensions over the islands, known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, by purchasing them from their private Japanese owner last year.

In an editorial ahead of Kerry's arrival in Beijing, the official Xinhua news agency said Washington must "press Japan to call off its provocative moves." It warned the U.S. should know that China will "not hesitate to take steps to secure its key national interests."

China-Japan ties were also strained by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit late last year to a Tokyo shrine that commemorates, among other war dead, several World War II war criminals.

The Asia trip is Kerry's fifth visit to the region since becoming the top U.S. diplomat last year. In addition to South Korea and China, he visits Indonesia on Saturday.

In Indonesia, the last leg of Kerry's trip, he is set to deliver a major speech on climate change. Analysts think the archipelago nation is especially vulnerable to climate change.

From Jakarta, Kerry heads Monday to the United Arab Emirates to meet Gulf leaders on Iran nuclear talks, Syria's civil war and Middle East peace talks.

Some have accused the White House of focusing on the Middle East at the expense of its so-called economic and military "pivot" to Asia.

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs