Russia, China agree joint approach to North Korea, slam US over missile shield

Reuters News
Posted: Jul 04, 2017 9:41 AM

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia and China have agreed a joint position on North Korea designed to defuse tensions around its missile program and both want Washington to halt deployment of a missile shield in South Korea, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday.

Moscow and Beijing had agreed on the need for a simultaneous freezing of North Korea's missile and nuclear program and large-scale military exercises by the United States and South Korea, the ministry said in a statement.

The statement was released after President Vladimir Putin held talks with visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping in the Kremlin.

North Korea said on Tuesday it had successfully test-launched an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) for the first time, which flew a trajectory that experts said could allow a weapon to hit the U.S. state of Alaska.

The same statement said Moscow and Beijing wanted the United States to immediately halt its deployment of the THAAD anti-missile system to South Korea, a move Washington says is necessitated by the North Korean missile threat.

(Reporting by Denis Dyomkin/Vladimir Soldatkin; Editing by Andrew Osborn)