Pence assures Japan: America is with you '100 percent'


He said North Korea's measures to bolster its nuclear forces are defensive "to cope with the US vicious nuclear threat and blackmail", and he said his country "is ready to react to any mode of war desired by the U.S".

"We will not rest and will not relent until we obtain the objective of a denuclearized Korean Peninsula", Vice President Mike Pence said Tuesday in Tokyo.

Pence arrived in Japan after visiting South Korea and leaves for Indonesia later on Wednesday.

U.S. defence secretary Jim Mattis warned that North Korea's latest failed missile launch was a reckless act of provocation and assured allies in Asia that America was ready to work to achieve a peaceful denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula. President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the 12-country trade agreement after his inauguration in January.

"Today we are beginning a process of economic dialogue, the end of which may result in bilateral trade negotiations in the future", Pence told a news conference with Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso, his counterpart at Tuesday's talks.

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He said his country's "era of strategic patience" with North Korea was over.

Vice-President Mike Pence could not have known when he took off from Joint Base Andrews Saturday morning that by the time he landed here in South Korea, the North Korean regime would have fired off yet another missile, raising tensions on the peninsula to nearly unprecedented levels.

"He would launch missiles at South Korea, Japan and America". In 2016, the surplus measured at $23.2 billion, according to official data.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence is on board an American aircraft carrier stationed in Japan amid heightened tension on the Korean Peninsula. "If that was a lie, then during Trump's term, South Korea will not trust whatever Trump says".

While the special-operations forces described by Yonhap report were said to have been formed by North Korea "for the first time", previous reports have referred to North Korean special-operations or special-warfare units.

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But John Schilling from the 38 North monitoring group said the failure was indicative of the test of a new and hitherto unknown system being developed by Kim Jong-Un's regime.

Pence said Washington would work closely with Japan and its allies for a peaceful resolution of the tensions but threatened Pyongyang with military action. China remains North Korea's chief source of fuel and food imports, but Pyongyang seems to have calculated that Beijing's fears of a collapse of Kim Jong Un's hard-line communist regime override any such snubs.

Pence said after the meeting that Trump believes it is in America's interest to negotiate economic deals on a bilateral basis.

Since Donald Trump took office, North Korea has launched at least eight ballistic missiles, and there is evidence that the North is preparing for a sixth nuclear test. "In the middle of him talking with North Korea I'm going to hit them with currency manipulation?"

"If the U.S. is planning a military attack against us we will react with a nuclear pre-emptive strike by our own style and method", Minister Han said.

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That plan was thrown into doubt when photos taken last weekend showed it operating almost 3,500 miles away, off Indonesia. Pyongyang said it may test missiles on a weekly basis, and warned of "all-out war" if the U.S. takes military action.

"But at the same time", the prime minister said, "dialogue for the sake of dialogue is valueless and it is necessary for us to exercise pressure North Korea so that it comes forward and engages in this serious dialogue". Lu said Beijing wants to resume the multi-party negotiations that ended in stalemate in 2009 and suggested that US plans to deploy a missile defence system in South Korea were damaging its relations with China. Yet the vice president suggested that the message being delivered from the White House was getting through. "If the planning a military attack against us, we will react with a nuclear preemptive strike by our own style and method".