The Korean Peninsula issue should be settled through peaceful means, President Xi Jinping told US President Donald Trump on Wednesday, adding that Beijing is willing to continue a dialogue with Washington on the issue.
Xi spoke by telephone with Trump on the issue just days after his meeting with the US president on April 6 and 7 in Florida.
The follow-up call after President Xi’s visit to Mar-a-Lago was “very productive”, the White House said in a statement on Wednesday.
Xi “stressed that China sticks to the target of the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and that China is committed to peace and stability of the peninsula,” according to a news release issued by the Foreign Ministry.
“China holds that the issue should be solved through peaceful means and is ready to maintain communication and coordination with the United States on the issue,” the statement said.
The two presidents also talked about the situation in Syria. Xi said any use of chemical weapons is “unacceptable” and that the path of political settlement should be followed.
He expressed the hope that the UN Security Council would speak in one voice, as it is important for the council’s members to remain united over the issue.
Xi said his recent tete-a-tete with Trump at the Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida has produced important results, which have won a positive response from the Chinese people and the international community.
He and Trump have increased mutual understanding and established sound working relations, he added.
He urged the two sides to promote economic cooperation, expand exchanges in military, law enforcement, technology and communication, enhance communication and coordination regarding major global and regional issues through a newly established four-pronged dialogue mechanism.
Xi also asked teams from China and the US to work together to make sure Trump’s visit to China later this year will achieve fruitful results.
Trump has called the meeting with Xi at Mar-a-Lago a success. He said he was looking forward to his state visit to China this year.
“We had a very good bonding. I think we had a very good chemistry together.” Trump said at a joint news conference with visiting NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Wednesday in Washington.
“I was very impressed with President Xi, and I think he means well and I think he wants to help,” Trump said.
When asked about the reason behind the phone conversation, which came right after Xi’s US trip, Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said on Wednesday that the two presidents agreed to keep close communication through all kinds of channels.
“After all, the time of the meetings was limited,” he said.
Lu said Beijing had taken note of remarks made by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson that Washington would consider talking with Pyongyang after the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea stops all nuclear and missile tests.
Ruan Zongze, executive deputy president of the China Institute of International Studies, said the situation on the Korean Peninsula issue is “very severe”.
Zhao Huanxin in Washington contributed to the story.