Senior Chinese, US officials exchange views on Korean Peninsula situation

U.S. Pacific Fleet

U.S. Pacific Fleet

The website of the U.S. Navy shows a photo of the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson transiting the Sunda Strait on April 15.

Tensions between the US and North Korea reached new heights recently with reports that a USA strike group, lead by the USS Carl Vinson, was heading toward the Korean Peninsula as a show of strength and to act as a deterrence.

China's top diplomat Yang Jiechi today held telephonic talks with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, even as Beijing remained silent over North Korea's "failed" missile test.

Russia's foreign minister says he hopes the USA will not take unilateral action against North Korea as it did recently in Syria. "Very powerful", Trump said. Multiple US defense officials told CNN that Mattis had inadvertently misspoke and that it was a port visit in Australia that was canceled to allow for the group's redeployment to the waters near the Korean Peninsula.

Carl Vinson has deployed to the region several times, starting with a deployment to the Western Pacific in 1983, a year after commissioning.

Tensions on the Korean peninsula have escalated as the USA president Donald Trump has adopted a harsh rhetoric against the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, who repelled China's exhortations and ordered to have new missile tests.

"White House officials said on Tuesday they were relying on guidance from the Defense Department", the Times reports.

The news of a major aircraft carrier's dispatch to the Sea of Japan agitated Pyongyang and made worldwide headlines.

The Japanese have been on alert since North Korea fired four ballistic missiles off the northeastern coast of Japan in early March, as reported by Reuters.

Last week, Chinese President Xi Jinping and his American counterpart Donald Trump also held a telephonic conversation to discuss the situation on the Korean Peninsula and in Syria.

China is urging a return to negotiations over North Korea's pursuit of nuclear weapons after Vice President Mike Pence warned that the USA has lost its patience with the regime.

That's because the ships aren't heading directly to the peninsula as originally reported.

Vice President Mike Pence left Seoul for Japan, where he reportedly reassured Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that the US would work with Japan and other allies in the region to find "a peaceable resolution and the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula".

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