Xi nudges Moon to think twice on THAAD

Park, who also served as co-chairman of Moon's presidential campaign team, is expected to meet key Chinese officials on the sidelines of the forum to discuss the ways to fix bilateral relations, the official told Yonhap.

The professor added: "According to my estimates, tensions on the Korean Peninsula will remain in May and June for Pyongyang is highly likely to conduct another nuclear test during this period".

The THAAD deployment was agreed upon by Moon's predecessor, conservative leader Park Guen-hye. As he took the oath of office Wednesday, Moon said he was open to visiting Pyongyang under the right conditions to discuss its nuclear program.

"President Trump and President Moon agreed to continue to strengthen the United States-Republic of Korea alliance and to deepen the enduring friendship between our two countries. Military action on the Korean peninsula can not happen without Korea's consent", Moon wrote during his presidential campaign, the Atlantic reports.

China bitterly opposes the deployment of the system, which it says will upset the strategic balance in the region, and during the campaign Mr Moon said he would review the system once he was elected.

President Moon and his citizens have a compelling interest in restraining the madness of Kim Jong-un.

Numerous missile tests were considered failures, but experts have said Pyongyang is making faster-than-expected progress toward its stated goal of developing a nuclear-tipped missile that could reach the US mainland.

Park, who also served as co-chairman of Moon's presidential campaign team, is expected to meet Chinese officials on the sidelines of the forum to discuss the ways to fix relations, the official told Yonhap.

Some 80 middle and high schools in South Korea, just 1.5 per cent of the total, have said they would adopt the state-issued books. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told the United Nations the US wants to bring North Korea to "its senses, not to its knees", according to the Newsweek report.

During the 40-minute conversation, Moon revealed his plans to send separate delegations to Beijing to discuss the dispute and North Korea's nuclear threat.

Trump has called on Beijing to do more to rein in North Korea, while China is angry over THAAD, which it be-lieves could pose a threat to its military.

The new President wants to get past that scandal and shape an effective, sane foreign policy for his country - in a zone where North Korea could set off a catastrophic war.

"I will do everything I can to maintain peace on the Korean peninsula".

"An official invitation came from China recently", South Korea's Yonhap news agency quoted a government official in Seoul as saying.

Mr Moon told President Xi Jinping that North Korean provocations had to stop before the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (Thaad) system could be reconsidered.

Both the USA and South Korea are keen on dismantling the nuclear program of Kim Jong Un and hence, are open to maintaining the sanctions on North Korea already laid in place by Trump's administration.

"South Korea is not the Philippines, and it's not quite possible that Moon Jae-in will become 'Korea's Duterte.' In fact, South Korea is unique".

Moon Jae-in was voted in as president of South Korea on 9 May 2017.

In the first direct contact between the South Korean and Chinese leaders, Xi explained China's position, Yoon, the South Korean presidential spokesman said, without elaborating. Their divergent approaches to Pyongyang could sour relations between the United States and South Korea.

Beijing has asked the deployment be canceled because of THAAD's powerful radar and regional surveillance capabilities.

The spokesman said: "The Prime Minister called the South Korean President Moon Jae-in earlier this morning to congratulate him on his recent electoral success".

China denies it has done anything to hurt South Korean businesses.

  • Rogelio Becker