Saturday, 17 February, 2018


The President of South Korea Welcomes Talks with Kim Jong Un

Trump has called on China to do more to resolve the North Korean nuclear issue Trump has called on China to do more to resolve the North Korean nuclear issue
Bennie Garza | 13 January, 2018, 02:04

Senior Policy Advisor to the Secretary of State Brian Hook said in a telephone briefing to reporters this week that "President Moon has said the improvement of relations between North and South Korea can not advance separately from resolving North Korea's nuclear program, and so we remain focused on our global pressure campaign". He said the USA was open to talks with North Korea under the right circumstances.

But Hook said the idea was one of many being explored, and that the allies invited to Vancouver would be consulted. He has been fond of of mocking Kim as "little Rocket Man" because of North Korean missile tests. The South and the United States are technically still at war with the North because the 1950-53 Korean War ended with a truce, not a peace treaty. Seoul suggested that the family reunion should be held during the Lunar New year in the coming month of February when the Winter Olympics was still going on.

In an annual speech to diplomats that has come to be known as his "State of the World" address, Francis also repeated his call for the "status quo" of Jerusalem to remain intact following U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to recognize the city as Israel's capital.

North Korea a year ago increased the pace of its missile programme.

"We will be discussing maritime interdiction", Hook said, raising the idea of an naval embargo to help enforce the already draconian United Nations sanctions on Kim's regime.

Despite the loss of nearly all trade, the impoverished North has pressed ahead with weapons development that Kim's regime sees as necessary for its survival in the face of US pressure.

However, Zhao Tong, a North Korea expert at the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center in Beijing, said China's attitude might change if North Korea launched a nuclear-tipped ICBM into the Pacific Ocean or fired missiles toward Guam.

Trump discussed North Korea in a call Thursday with French President Emmanuel Macron of France. "President Trump is aware of the consequences".

The prevailing view at the State Department is that military action is not worth the huge risk, a senior USA official said.

The consensus among USA intelligence agencies is Kim is convinced Washington seeks to overthrow him and only a nuclear arsenal can deter that.

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