South Korea Says US in Close Communications Over North
19 August, 2017, 03:13 | Author: Garry Little
After Trump said hostility from Pyongyang would be met with "fire and fury", North Korean military officials said they were considering to launch four missiles towards the US Pacific territory of Guam. Most notably, Pyongyang said it might consider an attack on the area near the USA territory of Guam in the Western Pacific.
China is North Korea's main economic partner and political backer, although relations between the two countries have deteriorated amid the North's continuing defiance of Beijing's calls for restraint. "This is a firm agreement between South Korea and the USA people can be assured and trust that there will be no war".
Every year in August, the South Korean and USA forces jointly hold military exercises which include the world's largest computer-simulated war games and involve several thousand troops from both countries, reports Efe news. President Trump also mentioned a red line in a statement regarding North Korea's nuclear and missile program in May, warning "I don't like red lines, but I have to act, if I must act".
Mr Trump wrote: "The alternative would have been both catastrophic and unacceptable!"
North Korea's threats against Guam and its advancing missile capabilities, highlighted by a pair of intercontinental ballistic missile flight tests in July, have raised security jitters among many South Korean who worry that a fully functional ICBM in Pyongyang would force the United States to rethink whether to trade NY or Washington for Seoul in the event of a war on the peninsula. Asked about potential unilateral USA action, he said "that's purely speculative and a decision to do that would be by the president".
In a meeting with Moon on Monday, Dunford reiterated the U.S.'s commitment to protect South Korea.
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Mr Trump tweeted on Wednesday that Kim Jong Un had: "made a very wise and well-reasoned decision", amid indications that he does not immediately plan to fire multiple missiles toward Guam. "I do not necessarily believe that showed his determination to take military options", Moon said.
Moon said he would be ready for dialogue once the isolated nation stops its provocations, adding that there was no rush.
Also in his speech, Moon said that South Korea should play a leading role in the nuclear issue in the peninsula. He urged the North to halt its efforts to develop a nuclear-tipped weapon that could reach the USA mainland.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in says U.S. President Donald Trump has told him North Korea would not be attacked without South Korea's approval.
USA officials and experts say the North has demonstrated major progress toward that goal with dozens of missile tests, including two ICBM launches last month.
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The White House said in a statement that Trump and Xi "agreed North Korea must stop its provocative and escalatory behavior". Dunford says he wants to underscore the United States' "ironclad commitment" to its alliance with Seoul and Tokyo .
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