Monday, July 3, 2017
Author: Stephan Haggard, University of California San Diego
An apparent outcome of the Mar-a-Lago summit between US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping was renewed commitment to rolling back North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs. Trump muted his aggressive rhetoric towards China, particularly on economic issues. In return, China promised to pull North Korea back to the negotiating table — but is it possible to keep such a promise?
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un looks on during a ballistic rocket test-fire through a precision control guidance system in this undated photo released by North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) 30 May 2017.
As with most presidential turnovers, Trump originally took great pains to differentiate himself from his predecessor by arguing that the era of ‘strategic patience’ was over. This Obama-era strategy involved a dual track approach of offering to negotiate on denuclearisation, but gradually tightening sanctions for both strategic and defensive reasons in the interim. The Trump administration, by contrast, emphasised that sanctions would be tightened significantly and that ‘all options were on the table’.
Read the full article on EAST ASIA FORUM.