On Saturday, three days before President Trump ominously threatened North Korea with "fire and fury like the world has never seen", his administration pulled off a genuine diplomatic success: the unanimous passage of a US -penned resolution in the Security Council that hit North Korea with a heavy slate of new sanctions.
Speaking at a regional security forum in Manila on Monday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said the new resolution showed China and the global community's opposition to North Korea's continued missile tests.
All this as the Trump administration continues to press leaders in Asia for more action against North Korea just days after the United Nations enacted its strongest sanctions yet against Pyongyang.
The diplomatic wrangling sought to build on the sweeping new North Korea sanctions passed by the U.N. Security Council a day earlier - the strongest in a generation, the USA said.
Earlier today, China said it would pay the biggest price from the new United Nations sanctions against North Korea because of its close economic relationship with the country, but would always enforce the resolutions. "Very big financial impact!"
But a commentary in the ruling party's Rodong Sinmun newspaper said Washington had disregarded the warning the North sent with its intercontinental ballistic missile tests and was pursuing "desperate efforts" in the form of stepped-up sanctions.
He also criticized Japan and South Korea, saying they were simply following Washington. "With his approval ratings falling even with his base, Trump is trapped between the realities of dealing with China and his campaign promises to get tough on trade".
The resolution is the sixth on North Korean to be adopted by the Security Council since 2006 (the previous ones are resolutions 1718, 1874, 2087, 2094 and 2270), and despite China having voted in favor of each one, there is scant evidence that it has implemented them robustly.
For now, it seems the U.S.is content to simply wait and try to choke North Korea economically: "Reuters" quoted a senior Trump official saying the White House had nothing to say on a so-called secondary sanctions for Chinese firms. In return for a missile moratorium, Beijing and Moscow say the US should undertake to end "large-scale" military exercises with South Korea. He said the North could still carry out further missile tests or a sixth atomic bomb test in the coming months under its broader weapons development timetable.
"It was a good outcome", Tillerson said Sunday about the sanctions. "We are friends. We are allies", said Duterte.
Trump tweeted Friday: "Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely".
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi pauses after delivering his opening statement during the Signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on the ASEAN-China Center.
The resolution also prohibits any new joint business ventures with North Koreans, limits existing ones and blacklists 13 new North Korean individuals and entities, including its primary foreign exchange bank. "The time for talk is over".
Moon, who took office in May, has advocated engaging Pyongyang with dialogue and offered to hold rare military talks with the North to ease tensions after Kim's first successful ICBM test July 4.
Earlier Pyongyang said it was ready to give Washington a "severe lesson" with its strategic nuclear force in response to any USA military action.
"The North Korean regime is going to have to make a choice", Anthony Ruggiero, an expert in North Korean sanctions, tells CBS News.
Jay Lefkowitz, a former US special envoy on human rights in North Korea, said China's efforts were encouraging but he questioned the value.
For Tillerson's interlocutors worldwide, this is beginning to be a familiar experience: When the top United States diplomat meets with counterparts, many are finding that he's arriving prepared with information on their countries' connections to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and suggestions on how they can reduce them.