China urges denuclearisation of Korean peninsula

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi at a news conference following his meeting with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias in Athens.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi at a news conference following his meeting with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias in Athens.PHOTO: REUTERS

ATHENS (AFP) - China's foreign minister called on Sunday (April 23) for the complete denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula amid rising tension over North Korea's missile and nuclear programmes.

"China is firmly supporting the denuclearisation of the area in the name of stability and peace", Wang Yi told reporters in Athens after meeting Greek counterpart Nikos Kotzias.

"China may not have the key to this solution ... but we are happy that more sides are accepting our point of view."

US President Donald Trump has urged China to take stronger steps to press North Korea to curb its nuclear and missile programmes.

During a regional tour last week, US Vice-President Mike Pence warned that "all options are on the table" to curb North Korea's nuclear ambitions, as fears grow it may be planning another atomic test.

Pyongyang has ramped up its rhetoric in recent weeks, threatening to hit back against any provocation. It has also renewed threats against regional US allies, including Japan and South Korea, which both host large American military contingents.