US urges China to use 'all tools' to moderate North Korea’s behaviour after latest missile test

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson arrives to attend a meeting on Syria at the World Conference Center in Bonn, western Germany, on Feb 17, 2017.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson arrives to attend a meeting on Syria at the World Conference Center in Bonn, western Germany, on Feb 17, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

BONN, GERMANY (AFP, Reuters) - US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Friday (Feb 17) urged China to do all it could to moderate North Korea’s destabilising behaviour after Sunday’s ballistic missile test by Pyongyang, Tillerson’s spokesman Mark Toner said.  

Tillerson made the comments during his first meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on the sidelines of a G20 foreign ministers meeting in Bonn, Germany.

“Secretary Tillerson also highlighted the increasing threat posed by North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs and urged China to use all available tools to moderate North Korea’s destabilising behaviour,” Toner said in a statement.  

The two also discussed the need to create a level playing field for trade and investment, he said. 

Wang, on his part, told Tillerson common interests between China and the United States far outweigh their differences, according to a statement published by China’s foreign ministry.  

Wang also told Tillerson that China and the US are jointly responsible for maintaining global stability, the statement said.

In a phone call with Chinese leader Xi Jinping last week, US President Donald Trump changed tack and agreed to honour the "one China" policy, a major diplomatic boost for Beijing, which brooks no criticism of its claim to self-ruled Taiwan.

It was the first call between the leaders since Trump took office four weeks ago.

However, several areas of disagreement between the two countries, such as currency, trade, the South China Sea and North Korea, were not mentioned in public statements on the telephone conversation.