BEIJING: China today lodged a diplomatic protest with the US after President Donald Trump alleged that Beijing was not helping with the process of denuclearisation of North Korea, and said his accusations were "irresponsible" and he was "passing the buck".
Trump had said that he had asked Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who was making his fourth visit to Pyongyang next week, to cancel his trip because he feel that no sufficient progress with respect to the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula was being made.
In a statement, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said Trump's allegation was not based on facts and was "irresponsible".
"We are seriously concerned and have made solemn representations, (diplomatic protest) to the US side," Lu said.
The Chinese protest followed after Trump's tweets yesterday that he had asked US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to cancel his trip to North Korea because there had not been significant progress on denuclearisation.
"Additionally, because of our much tougher Trading stance with China, I do not believe they are helping with the process of denuclearization as they once were (despite the UN Sanctions which are in place)," Trump said.
The world's two biggest economies, China and the US are currently involved in a trade war slapping billions of dollars of tariffs on each other goods following Trump's demand to Beijing to bring down USD 375 billion trade deficit.
Refuting Trump's allegations, Lu said China's stance on denuclearisation had been consistent, and it supported the US and North Korea to push forward the agreements reached during their landmark summit in Singapore in June.
"All related parties should stick to the path of political settlement and show more sincerity and flexibility rather than being unpredictable and passing the buck to others," Lu said.
China would keep communicating with all parties and keep contributing to the stability of the Korean peninsula, Lu added.
China is North Korea's biggest trade partner and close ally of Pyongyang.