Tillerson, Xi pledge closer cooperation, at least in public

Tillerson took a softer line after the meeting with Wang.

Tillerson said that the USA has provided $1.3 billion in resistance to the authoritarian regime since 1995, but "in return North Korea has detonated nuclear weapons and dramatically increased its launches of ballistic missiles to threaten Americana and our allies".

And these meetings may help elucidate a coherent North Korea policy at a complex and volatile time for the region.

"No matter what happens, we have to stay committed to diplomatic means as a way to seek peaceful settlement", he said.

But Tillerson refrained from further tough talk in his joint appearance with Wang, who appeared to chide the United States diplomat over his rhetoric this week. "Neither of us are ready to give up the hope for peace", Wang said.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is on a tour of Asia that has taken him to Japan, South Korea, and China.

Last week it launched four more ballistic missiles and it is believed to working to develop nuclear-tipped missiles that can reach the United States.

He called on China to "fully implement" UN-approved sanctions against North Korea, and said Washington will be "calling on everyone to join in" future actions.

The comments come after President Trump in a tweet slammed North Korea and China.

While China has agreed reluctantly to U.N. Security Council resolutions sanctioning North Korea, it is adamantly opposed to measures that might cause a collapse of the North Korean government and send waves of refugees into northeastern China while South Korean and US forces take up positions on its border. North Korea conducted two nuclear test explosions and 24 ballistic missile tests previous year, according to the Associated Press.

Washington has been pressing Beijing to do more to stop North Korea's nuclear and missile programmes.

Wang said China is willing to work with the US side on communication and cooperation, enhancing trust and properly handling differences to promote the healthy and stable development of bilateral ties in the new phase along the right track so as to benefit the people of two countries and the world at large.

Rex Tillerson said in Seoul on Friday that the United States and South Korea would "proceed with the installation" of the system, known as Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD).

He also called on the two countries to reinforce coordination on hotspot issues including the Korean Peninsular nuclear issue, Afghanistan, Syria and maintain close communication under the multilateral framework such as the United Nations, the G20 and the Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation. Russian Federation also opposes THAAD, for the same reasons.

However, he soothed ruffled feathers to some degree in February by agreeing to honour the so-called "One China" policy, which states that there is only one Chinese government.

At one point, while Tillerson was standing on the "yellow line" that, in essence, signifies the border, three North Korean soldiers watched from their side of the line and got to within a few feet from Tillerson, pool reporters said.

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