Trump, Xi converge on currency, Syria as US-China ties warm

China says President Xi has stressed the need for an end to North Korea's nuclear weapons program in a phone discussion with Trump that followed tweets from the USA president urging China to play a more active role.

Xi's call with Trump came after an influential state-run Chinese newspaper warned that the Korean peninsula was the closest it has been to a "military clash" since Pyongyang's first nuclear test in 2006.

According to a Friday report by NBC, the US National Security Council has suggested to Trump and his advisors that nuclear weapons could be returned to South Korea, or that an assassination could be staged to take the life of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

China's top nuclear envoy arrived in Seoul yesterday for talks on the North Korean threat, as a United States naval strike group headed for the region in a show of force.

Trump is hailing the rapport he developed with Xi during last week's Florida summit, which seems to have yielded an immediate easing of tensions.

U.S. President Donald Trump ordered his top national security adviser to prepare "a full range of options" for dealing with North Korea's nuclear and missile threats as Pyongyang appears to be gearing up for its next provocation.


US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Trump and Xi agreed on the "urgency of the threat of North Korea's nuclear weapons programme" and agreed to work together to resolve the issue "peacefully".

Earlier on Wednesday, two sources in Tokyo said Japan's navy planned exercises with the Vinson carrier group in a joint show of force.

Trump responded by saying that the missile attack was meant to make sure chemical weapons will never again be used following the casualties among Syrian civilians, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Koichi Hagiuda said.

"Not only [is] Washington brimming with confidence and arrogance following the missile attacks on Syria, but Trump is also willing to be regarded as a man who honours his promises", the Global Times said.

With some observers now talking about the possibility of USA military action against North Korea, a lawmaker from Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party on Sunday said such a scenario was unlikely as a military strike against the North could precipitate a nuclear attack on the South or Japan. "Pyongyang should avoid making mistakes at this time".

North Korean State media reported Saturday that dictator Kim Jong-un and Assad spoke after the attack, with Assad allegedly thanking Kim for understanding Syria's effort to "meet such challenges as sinister actions of the world's terrorists".


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