News Worms
News Worms


Japan, US united on N. Korea threat

But the current frontrunner to replace her, Moon Jae-in, has suggested a new approach might be required in handling North Korea - and has voiced concern about the U.S. deployment of the Thaad defence system in the South.

North Korea launched ballistic missiles twice in three weeks and said that it's close to testing a missile that could reach the US.

"North Korea and its people need not fear the United States or their neighbors in the region who seek only to live in peace with North Korea", he said. "On North Korea, we share stance that we can not absolutely accept Pyongyang's missile and nuclear programs".

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has sent frustration coursing anew through the diplomatic press corps this week by handpicking a single digital news reporter to travel with him to Asia after refusing to allow anyone from major news outlets that regularly cover the State Department a seat on his airplane. They are looking at "what are next steps we can take to really put pressure on the regime to make them feel and pay a price for their behavior", he said.

He said "clearly the level of spending that the State Department has been undertaking is unsustainable".

But Tillerson also said that the State Department "is coming off a historically high allocation of resources", something he said it must "recognise".

Mr Tillerson's come at a time of increasing tension on the Korean Peninsula. His decision to visit Japan first demonstrates its importance to the U.S.as a diplomatic partner in Asia.

North Korea claims that military exercises conducted by neighbouring South Korea in collaboration with the USA are acts of aggression towards it, and its ally China has backed Kim's regime's stance.

While in Tokyo, Tillerson was also scheduled to meet Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who forged a bond with President Trump during his visit to Washington last month. Toner noted that members of the press who traveled overseas commercially would have "broad access" to Tillerson.

On Friday, Tillerson will head to South Korea, which is in political turmoil after its President Park Geun-hye was impeached last week as the result of a corruption scandal. But he didn't provide details on how the Trump administration would address North Korea's nuclear and missile programs.

Tillerson's trip, which will take him next to South Korea and China, comes as the Trump administration conducts a broad review of US policy toward North Korea.

He did not reveal how the Trump administration, which is now doing a review of USA policy towards North Korea, would tackle the country. Tillerson again reaffirmed the United States' commitment to the defense of Japan.

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