Published: Tue, March 13, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Japan, S.Korea agree to maintain 'maximum pressure' on N.Korea: minister

Japan, S.Korea agree to maintain 'maximum pressure' on N.Korea: minister

Demonstrably, Kim has been a major posturer, showing the world and its leaders North Korea's military capability at nearly every turn, most importantly their nuclear capability (embarrassingly for him, many test launches failed).

When asked whether the message concerned the release of three American hostages in North Korea, as had been speculated before the South's delegation arrived in the USA, the source denied it, saying that the message is more "comprehensive in content".

The summit between the two leaders arose following the first high-level direct talks between the North and South Korea in more than a decade. "If this is carried out, Western countries trading with the United States and many steelmakers and aluminum producers will suffer significant damage".

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the unexpected meeting would give Trump a chance "to sit down and see if he can cut a deal" with Kim over the North's nuclear programme.

South Korea's national security adviser on Monday thanked Chinese President Xi Jinping for his "big role" in the diplomatic process that has set up a historic summit between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un.

Separately, Trump has, on occasion, criticized the Iran agreement for failing to address that nation's internal human-rights abuses - which, however real and contemptible, pale in comparison to those of North Korea's totalitarian regime.

A US decision to withdraw from the Iran deal would thus antagonize an worldwide community whose cooperation Washington needs to maintain - and possibly augment - economic sanctions against North Korea.

The story so far: President Donald Trump accepted North Korea's invitation for direct talks with Kim Jong Un, to be held by May.

North Korea has notoriously violated worldwide agreements on non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, walked out of the Six Party Talks in 2008, and breached United Nations sanctions on the regime. "The U.S. has no diplomatic ties with North Korea; the countries are adversaries dating to the Korean War and repeatedly traded heated insults a year ago, including Trump's remarks at the United Nations, in which he vowed to "totally destroy" North Korea if the U.S. was threatened".

"It is up to the parties involved to decide if, when and where the talks will be held", the ministry said in a statement.

"We have not heard anything directly back from North Korea, although we do expect to hear something directly from them", Tillerson said during a press conference in Nigeria.

Just hours before Trump made his announcement on Thursday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had said direct talks with North Korea were "a long way" off.

"With Japan, South Korea and the United States closely cooperating, I wish to put all my strength toward resolution of the nuclear issue, the missile issue and the abduction issue", Abe said. North Korean media have reported the South Korean visit, but no details of the talks.

If the President was listening to Maginnis for advice, he says, he would tell him not to agree to any summit. "Missile launches clearly mean a lot to the North Koreans".

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