Friday, July 7, 2017

THREATS FROM NORTH KOREA: Trump pledges to act very strongly on NoKor missile threat

US President Donald Trump vowed to confront North Korea "very strongly" following its latest missile test and urged nations to show Pyongyang there would be consequences for its weapons programme.

Speaking at a news conference, Trump said North Korea was "a threat, a we will confront it very strongly." He said the United States was considering “severe things” for North Korea, but that he would not draw a “red line” of the kind that his predecessor, Barack Obama, had drawn but not enforced on the use of chemical weapons in Syria.

US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said the missile test in itself did not bring the parties closer to a war and stressed that America’s focus was on diplomatic efforts to pressure Pyongyang.

Mattis spoke by phone with South Korean Defence Minister Han Min-koo on Thursday, reaffirming Washington’s commitment to the U.S.-South Korea alliance and promising “the full range of U.S. capabilities.” He spoke with his Japanese counterpart on Wednesday.

China called on Thursday for restraint and made clear it did not want to be targeted by U.S. sanctions. Chinese Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao said that while China would implement relevant UN resolutions, “the U.S. should not use their domestic laws as excuses to levy sanctions against Chinese financial institutions”.

Russia, meanwhile, objected on Thursday to U.N. Security Council condemnation of the North Korean rocket launch because the U.S.-drafted statement referred to it as an intercontinental ballistic missile, diplomats said.

Source: Reuters

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