China leaning on Singapore to keep ASEAN calm over South China Sea

Issues before ASEAN ministers meeting in Manila

Gritty Talks Ahead as China, ASEAN Agree to Avoid Mishaps in Disputed Sea

China's other precondition before it agrees to start talks on the COC is that "the situation in the South China Sea should also be generally stable".

Stop testing missiles for an "extended period", Tillerson said, and the U.S. might deem North Korea ready to talk.

They also urged South Korea and the United States to stop carrying out military drills.

Armed with extraordinary new UN sanctions, nations yesterday raced to ensure that North Korea's biggest trading partners actually carry them out, an elusive task that has undercut past attempts to strong-arm Pyongyang into abandoning its nuclear weapons.

Washington-based think tank Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (Amti-CSIS) on Thursday disproved the claims of Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Philippine Foreign Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano that China is no longer doing reclamation work on any of the disputed islands in the South China Sea.

"Owing to China's traditional economic ties with North Korea, it will mainly be China paying the price for implementing the resolution", a Foreign Ministry statement cited Mr Wang as saying.

"These developments seriously threaten peace, security and stability in the region and the world", the Asean envoys said in a separate statement.

Since the relationship of dialog was established between them in 1991, China and ASEAN have adhered to the theme of cooperation and development, ever strengthening mutual political trust, and yielding fruitful results from pragmatic cooperation, Xi said. Washington has repeatedly said that it doesn't rule out any of scenario, including a military one, concerning the North Korean problem.

Trump in turn responded by warning North Korea it would face "fire and fury" if it further threatened the United States.

The past six decades have been punctuated by periodic rises in antagonism and rhetoric that have always stopped short of a resumption of active hostilities. But in the wake of two historically successful tests by North Korea of its burgeoning intercontinental ballistic missile program, Defense Department officials are concerned Seoul's capabilities may be no match for Pyongyang's rapidly developing nuclear arsenal.

Wang said that apart from the new sanctions, the resolution also made clear that the six-party talks process, a stalled dialogue mechanism with North Korea that also includes Russian Federation and Japan, should be restarted.

Moscow and Beijing both have proposed a "freeze for a freeze" approach, in which North Korea would suspend its missile and nuclear testing if the United States and its allies stop conducting joint military exercises in the region. China alone is responsible for 90 percent of North Korea's trade, and Russian Federation like China employs North Koreans as contract workers, whose salaries mostly go directly to their government. North Korea's Rodong Sinmun news website published a commentary dismissing the sanctions as "cooked up by the USA", adding that "the US mainland is on the crossroads of life and death".

Lavrov told reporters that he believed the United States would continue a dialogue with Russian Federation despite what both sides have described as the worst tensions since the Cold War ended.

The joint statement issued after the latest ASEAN foreign ministerial meeting did not mention China by name, only emphasizing the importance of "non-militarization" of the South China Sea.

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