Donald Trump is putting pressure on China to cut off oil exports to Pyongyang, as part of a stepped-up campaign to convince North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un to abandon his nuclear and ballistic missile programs. Rex Tillerson, US secretary of state, and HR McMaster, national security adviser, on Tuesday said the Trump administration wanted China to go beyond existing UN sanctions by cutting off supplies of crude oil to North Korea. The move would impose significant economic pain on the hermit regime, according to the Financial Times.
“The president would like to see China cut the oil off,” Mr Tillerson said at the Atlantic Council, a Washington-based think-tank. “The last time the North Koreans came to the table, it was because China cut the oil off. Three days later the North Koreans were at the table talking.” In what appeared to be a change of policy, Mr Tillerson added that the US was prepared to talk with Pyongyang at any time.