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Cut North Korea's lifeline: PM to China

21 Avril 2017

With a USA aircraft carrier group steaming to the area in a show of force, fears of a confrontation have been rising. But Pence expressed impatience with the unwillingness of the regime to move toward ridding itself of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles.

The United States is not looking to get into a fight with North Korea unless Pyongyang sparks one, Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley told reporters, Sputnik reported.

"But the era of strategic patience is over", Mr Pence declared. "Everybody has been outplayed, they've all been outplayed by this gentleman, and we'll see what happens".

From two continents, Pence and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis warned that North Korea's latest failed missile launch was a reckless act of provocation and assured allies in Asia that the USA was ready to work to achieve a peaceful denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Monday that Moscow can not accept the DPRK's "reckless nuclear actions".

Meanwhile, China made a plea for a return to negotiations.

The statement was made amid an escalation of tensions on the Korean peninsula with the South Korea and USA military reporting April 16 that they had witnessed what they believe to be a failed missile test by Pyongyang which followed a number of missile launches and nuclear tests considered to be in violation with the UN Security Council resolution.

The statement said North Korea's illegal ballistic missile activities are leading to a nuclear weapons delivery system and "greatly increasing tension in the region and beyond". "Start a trade war with China while in the middle of him working on a bigger problem, frankly, with North Korea?"

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Pence struck a stern tone after arriving at a US naval base in Japan from South Korea. With no US trade representative yet in office and other key positions still unfilled, such nitty-gritty discussions will have to come later. -South Korean installation, which is just outside the 2.5-mile wide (4 kilometers) DMZ.

"We will not rest and will not relent until we obtain the objective of a denuclearized Korean Peninsula", Pence continued and reassured Japan's leaders that the United States would continue to support them.

President Donald Trump said Tuesday "you always have to be concerned" when he was asked how anxious Americans should be about the possibility of nuclear war with North Korea. "But dialogue for the sake of having dialogue is meaningless".

Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, said on Monday at a briefing that Trump would not be "drawing any lines in the sand" when it comes to North Korea, as reported by Telegraph.

Experts say the North may soon carry out its sixth nuclear test.

The North has warned of a nuclear strike against the United States if provoked. China, which is Pyongyang's only friend, is also against the programme, at least openly, but has not taken any effective step to persuade Pyongyang to stop it. Beijing is also not happy with United States steps, like the THAAD deployment, which it thinks could be used against it.

McMaster cited Trump's recent decision to order missile strikes in Syria after a chemical attack blamed on the Assad government, as a sign that the president "is clearly comfortable making tough decisions".

Cut North Korea's lifeline: PM to China