Pence, headed to Japan, turns focus to trade with key ally

Pence, headed to Japan, turns focus to trade with key ally

Pressure on North Korea is crucial, the prime minister said. "So I don't think that you're going to see the president drawing red lines in the sand".

Washington is anxious that North Korea may soon build a nuclear-tipped missile that could reach the United States.

Jacobs agreed that unification may be a long-term outcome but said the first step needs to be getting rid of the nuclear weapons.

Past administrations, though, have failed to stop, let alone slow down, North Korea's nuclear program and ballistic missile developments. North Korea says whatever action the United States may take, it will respond in kind.

At the outset of his meeting with Abe, Pence said that "While all options are on the table", Trump was determined to work with Japan, South Korea and other allies in the region to resolve the problem.

"The respected Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un in his historic new year address this year said that we are at the final stage of preparations to launch an ICBM (Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile)", he replied.

While U.S. -led sanctions and ransom have failed to rein in North Korea's jingoism, China's approach has, too.

Trump campaigned for office on an "America First" platform, saying he would boost US manufacturing jobs and shrink the country's trade deficit with countries like Japan.

The interview was one of several in the last week in which Trump has suggested China could win United States concessions on trade in exchange for action on North Korea. That means the missile could fire at longer ranges, presumably farther from the North Korean coastline, and have a greater chance of hitting the threatening incoming missile.

Last year, Reuters reported that North Korea was using Sinotruk HOWO trucks to display a new mobile artillery system.

"We ultimately want this to be about, how do we get more American products to Japan?" the adviser said.

In Moscow, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, speaking to reporters Monday evening, said he hopes the United States "there will be no unilateral actions like those we saw recently in Syria and that the USA will follow the line that President Trump repeatedly voiced during the election campaign". President Donald Trump earlier warned that North Korean President Jong Un has "gotta behave". "Trump is more impulsive and unpredictable than Kim Jong Un", he told viewers of his prime-time Sunday "Vesti Nedelyi" program, which earlier this year carried paeans to Trump for his pledge to warm up relations with Russian Federation.

China has turned away coal shipments and made more forceful statements in recent weeks in an attempt to cool the ratcheting of tensions in the region. Both Sinotruk and Triangle said they were unaware that their products were used in North Korea's military parade.

But Pence and Hwang said they were troubled by retaliatory economic moves by China against the deployment in South Korea of a U.S. anti-missile system known as the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD). "But dialogue for the sake of having dialogue is meaningless".

But Wu had not been able to confirm plans to visit North Korea, South Korea's Yonhap news agency quoted a diplomatic source as saying: "I understand the Chinese side is asking but the North is not replying".

The North has warned of a nuclear strike against the United States if provoked.

"The United States introduced in South Korea - the Korean peninsula, the world's biggest hotspot - the huge nuclear strategic asset, seriously stretching the peace and security of the peninsula, and pushing the situation there to the brink of war", Kim said.

"The DPRK is ready to react to any mode of war desired by the Americans", Kim In Ryong told reporters at United Nations headquarters, using the acronym for North Korea's formal name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

He has sent a navy strike group towards the Korean Peninsula, and the US and South Korea are moving ahead with the early deployment of a controversial missile defence system.

Kim said U.S. -South Korean military exercises being staged now are the largest-ever "aggressive war drill" aimed at his country, formally called the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

"At the same time, as a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council, China strictly adheres to its global responsibilities, including those from Security Council resolutions", Lu told a daily news briefing.

North Korea has conducted five nuclear tests, including two previous year.

Kim ignored questions about the DPRK's relationship with China and reports the government didn't respond to requests from Chinese officials for a meeting.

US officials described the missile fired Saturday as a KN-17, a new mobile-launched, single-stage missile that uses liquid fuel.

But Acting President Hwang Kyo Ahn held a joint press conference with Mr Pence and talked tough, promising "punitive acts" if any further "provocations" (such as missile tests) came from the North and emphasising the swift deployment of the THAAD anti-missile defence system.



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