U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson held top-level talks in China on Saturday as the U.S. looks to tighten an economic squeeze on North Korea. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson held top-level talks in China on Saturday as the United States looks to tighten an economic squeeze aimed at persuading North Korea to retreat from its nuclear arms and missile programs. The United States sees China as critical to averting a military confrontation with Pyongyang, which is fast advancing toward its goal of developing a nuclear-tipped missile capable of reaching the United States. U.S. officials say Beijing appears increasingly willing to cut ties to North Korea's economy by adopting U.N. sanctions, after long accounting for some 90 percent of its neighbor's foreign trade. But to succeed in reaching any kind of diplomatic solution, Tillerson would need to overcome some basic U.S. assumptions about North Korea and China. The first would be getting North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to view nuclear weapons as a liability, not a strength. The U.S. intelligence community does not believe Kim is likely to willingly give up his weapons program.