Pence warns North Korea: "The sword stands ready"

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Today video has emerged of a state gathering in North Korea, fully equipped with a band dressed in military gear, where music was played as a video of the United States getting hit by missiles went on in the background.

"Allowing this dictator to have that kind of power is not something that civilised nations can allow to happen", he said in reference to Kim.

Tension on the Korean Peninsula has risen this month, with the Trump administration stepping up pressure on North Korea and two major anniversary events in North Korea.

Little hope is held for reviving the motion against North Korea - one diplomat said it was unlikely the Security Council would be able to resolve differences on the statement.

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"That challenge is coming if something doesn't change", he warned, adding that China is the key to this issue but even that may not be enough to deter North Korea.

The program has been in development with Japan and is aimed at shooting down intermediate-range North Korean missiles that pose a threat to the USA ally.

The rhetoric seems to be blurring the lines between North Korea and economic ties with China, issues that previous US administrations had kept separate. That could be a good cop/bad cop play, with Japan and South Korea in the former role, and the United States and perhaps China in the latter.

One diplomatic source in Seoul said, "Since Xi became president, Beijing has displayed behavior that seems to idealize the old system of Asian countries paying tribute to China".

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The Carl Vinson strike group was supposed to travel to the Korean peninsula on April 8 because of the tension between North Korea and the United States.

Iran's foreign minister said Thursday morning the accusations are "worn out" and said America must live up to its obligations.

The Japanese government assumes that the United States would begin operations to evacuate some 200,000 US nationals in South Korea in advance if Washington were to launch a pre-emptive attack on the North. Tokyo is working out a plan to evacuate Japanese nationals in conjunction with the USA evacuation scenario. The latest draft statement dropped "through dialogue" and Russian Federation requested it be included again.

In Moscow, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters he hopes "there will be no unilateral actions like those we saw recently in Syria and that the USA will follow the line that President Trump repeatedly voiced during the election campaign".

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South Korea, the US and Japan held their 9th Defense Trilateral Talks in Tokyo on Wednesday, releasing a joint statement condemning North Korea's continued missile provocations and urging China to take a more responsible role in securing regional peace. It was now heading for the Western Pacific as ordered, it said. South Korean media reported that they are part of a biological and chemical weapons unit that took part in the parade for the first time.

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