ASEAN, Japan, China, South Korea agree to bolster financial cooperation

Rex Tillerson expected to press Asian Countries on North Korean threat

The ASEAN ministers called for a "complete, verifiable and irreversible" denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and for all parties to exercise "self-restraint" to deescalate the tensions and create an atmosphere conducive to talks. 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.

Apart from the 10 ASEAN members, North Korea is one of 17 other countries including China, South Korea and the United States that participate at ARF meetings. He says he won't give a concrete timeframe but that the USA will "know it when we see it".

The ministers gathered two days after the U.N. Security Council adopted fresh sanctions on Pyongyang that will slash the nation's $3 billion of annual export revenue by a third in response to its two long-range missile tests in July.

Reluctant customers, such as Ethiopia and Yemen, "might prefer to buy elsewhere, but because of price or lingering dependency have found it hard to cut Pyongyang out of their arms-related supply chain", Berger continued, adding that he Republic of the Congo is one of the many ad hoc customers that turns to North Korea as a sporadic supplier. A statement from the White House says Trump and Moon "affirmed that North Korea poses a grave and growing direct threat to the United States, South Korea, and Japan, as well as to most countries around the world".

Kang is echoing Tillerson's praise for the sanctions approved Saturday by the U.N. Security Council.

The ministerial meeting, however, had "very limited time for more in-depth" discussion of the issues raised, but the Philippines, as this year's chair of ASEAN, wants to see a "legally binding code of conduct" in the disputed sea region.

One of the secondary sanctions efforts deals with jurisdictions that are non-compliant with United Nations resolutions, Stephan Haggard, visiting fellow at the Peterson Institute of International Economics, said in a Monday note.

Ahead of the meetings, outspoken Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte branded Kim Jong Un as "crazy" for "playing with unsafe toys" that endangered the entire region.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi says he urged his North Korean counterpart to abide by United Nations resolutions and stop provoking "the global community's goodwill" with missile launches and nuclear tests. He voiced his support for the latest U.N. sanctions, but pressed for those measures to be accompanied by talks among the major nations involved.

The Trump administration has threatened to take military action if North Korea does not abandon its missile tests' however, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson raised the prospect of talks August 7 if Pyongyang halts future tests.

Should those talks occur, they would be the first military-to-military dialogue in three years. Those capabilities are already a threat to neighbors and USA allies South Korea and Japan.

Responding to the ICBM provocation with a show of force, the US and South Korean troops on Wednesday conducted "deep strike" precision missile drills using Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) and the Republic of Korea's Hyunmoo Missile II.

Reported byBenarNews, an RFA-affiliated online news service. "We warn North Korea not to test or misunderstand the will of the South Korea-U.S. alliance".

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