President Donald Trump on Saturday expressed frustration with China over its inability to curb North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, signaling the strategic cultivation of his Chinese counterpart was nearing its end a day after Pyongyang tested its latest missile.
On Friday, North Korea fired a new intercontinental ballistic missile that experts say has the potential to reach the U.S. mainland. The test sparked condemnation from South Korea, America and Japan, but no consensus on how to check the hermetic Communist nation’s ambitions.
However, Trump lashed out at China for being unable to rein in North Korea, as both countries exchange billions per year in trade across the border that separates them. In a series of posts on Twitter, the president accused China of doing “nothing for us with North Korea, just talk.”
Trump’s remarks represent a stark tone from his constructive tone toward China on sensitive issues such as trade and foreign relations. The president has made overtures toward Chinese President Xi Jinping to exert influence over Pyongyang.
In April, a summit between the two leaders resulted in Trump and Xi agreeing to cooperate on a range of issues, with Trump declaring the bilateral meeting a “tremendous” success. Most notably, the president pointedly declined to label China a currency manipulator, despite having vowed to do so on the campaign trail last year.
With no consensus among major world powers on how to halt the aggressions, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has grown increasingly brazen in his threats. On Friday, he claimed his country had the capacity to strike the entire continental U.S. North Korea has tested at least a dozen rockets in 2017 alone.