Trump says China is working with US on 'North Korea problem'

Frederick Owens
April 17, 2017

Having blasted Beijing throughout his presidential campaign for unfairly manipulating its currency, he tweeted on Sunday: "Why would I call China a currency manipulator when they are working with us on the North Korean problem?"

Echoing the remarks of US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson last month, Pence said the "era of strategic patience is over".

Pyongyang insists it needs a powerful arsenal - including atomic weapons - to protect itself from what it says is the ever-present threat of invasion by hostile USA forces.

McMaster was asked on ABC's Sunday program "This Week" about North Korea's complaints that aggressive language from the USA increases the likelihood of conflict.

The missile was launched from the same point of the April 5 launch, a White house foreign policy adviser said.

Earlier Monday, Pence visited with USA troops at Camp Bonifas, just south of the DMZ.

A North Korean missile exploded during launch Sunday, U.S. and South Korean officials said, a high-profile failure that comes as a powerful U.S. aircraft supercarrier approaches the Korean Peninsula in a show of force.

The US vice president's three-day visit to South Korea began on Sunday.

The demilitarised zone (DMZ) is a heavily mined, four-km-wide strip of land lined with barbed wire running across the Korean peninsula, with soldiers on both sides in a continual eyeball-to-eyeball standoff.

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Panmunjom: The United States is ruling nothing out in its dealings with North Korea, Vice President Mike Pence said on Monday during a visit to the heavily militarised border between the two Koreas.

The test, which was said to have failed, took place hours before US Vice President Mike Pence arrived in South Korea for talks on curbing Pyongyang's weapons programmes.

National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster echoed Pence's remarks in an interview on ABC's "This Week", calling the missile test part of a pattern of "provocative and destabilizing and threatening behavior".

Mr Pence noted that the United States commitment to South Korea was unwavering.

South Korea, which hosts 28,500 USA troops, warned of punitive action if yesterday's launch led to further provocation. The missile which is supposed to be one of the country's new "game-changer" intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) which was revealed to the world in a display of military might during the country's parade and celebration of the country's creation yesterday.

China's response has been far more pro forma than proactive.

And North Korea's Foreign Minister echoed this sentiment, claiming: "Nothing that will stop us from conducting a nuclear test whenever we see fit".

Former Conservative foreign secretary Sir Malcom Rifkind said it was possible the weapon either malfunctioned or was sabotaged by a USA cyberattack. China has placed punishing sanctions on North Korea.

"The Trump administration, which made a surprise cruise guided missile strike at Syria on April 6, has entered the path of open threat and blackmail against (North Korea)", a spokesman for the Korean People's Army said according to state news agency KCNA. The country launched a long-range rocket and conducted two nuclear tests previous year, including its most powerful to date. Instead it staged a massive military parade to show off its new advanced missiles, including, the first time, multiple Pukkuksong submarine-launched ballistic missiles, which have a range of more than 1,000km, and are likely to be developed further.

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