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China says optimism remains to resolve North Korea issue through talks

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BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s top government diplomat said it was still possible to resolve the North Korean nuclear issue through international dialogue, even after Pyongyang’s two short-range missile tests this month.

North Korea fired two short-range missiles on Thursday, its second such test in less than a week.

Chinese State Councillor Wang Yi said during a trip to Russia on Monday the resolution process had become stuck and there had been an increase in uncertainty since the last U.S.-North Korea summit in Hanoi in February.

“But we have seen that the North Korea side is still upholding the basic goal of achieving the denuclearisation of the peninsula, and the U.S. side has not yet abandoned its basic thinking of resolving the issue through dialogue,” Wang said, according to a Chinese Foreign Ministry statement on Tuesday.

“This is to say that the resolution for the peninsula nuclear issue has not come off the tracks, and remains within the framework for a political resolution.”

The reason for the stalemate is that both parties have yet to find a feasible, realistic road map for a resolution, Wang added.

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday he does not consider North Korea’s recent launch of short-range ballistic missiles “a breach of trust.”

(Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Sam Holmes)

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