Reuters WASHINGTON (Reuters) — U.S. President Donald Trump dismissed a Chinese diplomatic effort to rein in North Korea’s weapons program as a failure on Thursday, while Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Beijing was doing a lot, but could do more to limit oil supplies to Pyongyang.
In a tweet, Trump delivered another insulting barb against North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, who he called “Little Rocket Man” and a “sick puppy” after North Korea test-fired its most advanced missile to date on Wednesday.
Trump’s tweets further inflamed tensions reignited this week after North Korea said it had successfully tested a new intercontinental ballistic missile in a “breakthrough” that put the U.S. mainland within range of its nuclear weapons whose warheads could withstand re-entry to the Earth’s atmosphere.
“The Chinese envoy, who just returned from North Korea, seems to have had no impact on Little Rocket Man,” Trump said on Twitter, a day after speaking with Chinese President Chinese President Xi Jinping and reiterating his call for Beijing to use its leverage against North Korea.
Tillerson on Thursday welcomed Chinese efforts on North Korea, but said Beijing could do more to limit its oil exports to the country.
Russia: U.S. provoking North
In Moscow, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Washington’s approach was dangerously provocative.
Lavrov pointed to joint U.S.-South Korean military exercises planned for December, and accused the United States of trying to provoke Kim into “flying off the handle” over his missile program to hand Washington a pretext to destroy his country.