PN's Voice 123

Peace Network Korea
PN's Voice 123, 03.08.2017
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PN's Voice No. 123,  03. 08. 2017 
Small steps, Road to peace

US Secretary of State tells NK: 'We are Not Your Enemy'

Rex Tillerson has said the US would welcome a dialogue with North Korea and insisted the US did not seek regime change in Pyongyang, telling the country: “We are not your enemy.” The secretary of state said the North Koreans’ nuclear weapons programme would have to be on the table at any such talks and that the outcome would have to be that the regime would have to relinquish its arsenal while the US would provide security assurances. But he went out of his way to assure the leadership under Kim Jong-un that the regime would not be endangered if it dispensed with its growing nuclear arsenal. “We do not seek a regime change, we do not seek the collapse of the regime, we do not seek an accelerated reunification of the peninsula,” Tillerson said. “We do not seek an excuse to send our military north of the 38th parallel.”

The conciliatory tone and the emphasis on dialogue represented a pronounced contrast with Donald Trump, who has become significantly more agitated about North Korea as it continues its tests of long range missiles. The Republican senator Lindsey Graham said he had been told by the president that the regime’s continued development of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) capable of delivering a nuclear weapon to the US mainland would lead to war between the two countries (see below story for more detail).

Tillerson’s tone was also markedly different to Trump’s on China’s role with regard to North Korea, and its failure to pressure North Korea into curbing its weapons programme. “I am very disappointed in China,” Trump tweeted on Sunday. “They do NOTHING for us with North Korea, just talk. We will no longer allow this to continue. China could easily solve this problem!” Speaking at a rare appearance before the press at the state department, Tillerson stressed that while China did have a great deal of potential leverage on Pyongyang, “we certainly don’t blame China for the situation in North Korea. Only the North Koreans are to blame for this situation.”
Source : The Guardian, CNN

Trump Would Go to War with N. Korea

U.S. President Donald Trump has said he will go to war with North Korea if Pyongyang continues to threaten the U.S. with its nuclear and missile programs, an influential Republican senator said Tuesday. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) relayed his discussions with the president on NBC's "Today Show." "There will be a war with North Korea over the missile program if they continue to try to hit America with an ICBM," the senator said. "He's told me that. I believe him. If I were China, I would believe him, too, and do something about it. You can stop North Korea, militarily or diplomatically." "There is a military option: To destroy North Korea's program and North Korea itself," Graham added. "I prefer the diplomatic approach. But they will not be allowed to have a missile to hit America with a nuclear weapon on top."
Source : Yonhap News

US Demonstrates Military Might Against NK in ICBM Test Launch

The United States conducted a test of an intercontinental ballistic missile Wednesday amid escalating tensions with North Korea following its latest missile provocation. The North’s most recent test launch proved that its weapons could reach as far as Chicago on the U.S. mainland. Carrying an empty test warhead, an intercontinental ballistic missile was fired from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California early morning Wednesday. The U.S. Air Force said that the test was to prove that the U.S.’ nuclear enterprise is safe, secure, effective and ready to defend against attacks on the U.S. and its allies. It said that the test was not in direct response to the recent North Korean missile activities. Experts said that the U.S.' Minuteman III can hit the North Korean capital city in around half an hour if fired from California.
Source : KBS News

NK Leader Should Not be Sleeping Easily: McMaster

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un should not be sleeping easily at night, President Trump's national security adviser said Wednesday as he addressed the regime's missile and nuclear programs. In an interview with MSNBC, National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster also said the North's recent tests of intercontinental ballistic missiles pose a "grave" threat regardless of how far in the U.S. mainland they can reach. "No, I think he should not be because he has the whole world against him, right?" McMaster said when asked whether Kim should be sleeping easily. "He's isolated on this." Asked if the current leader's removal would change Pyongyang's provocative behavior, he replied, "I'm not sure about that. I don't think anybody has a very clear picture of the inner workings of that regime."
Source : Yonhap News

S. Korea Trying to Figure Intent of N. Korea's Continued Rejection

South Korea is trying to figure out the intent of North Korea’s continued rejections of civic groups’ offers for exchanges and joint events. North Korea on Wednesday rejected a South Korean civic group’s proposal for a joint event to celebrate the 72nd anniversary of Korea’s liberation from Japan’s colonial rule in August. A Unification Ministry official said on Thursday that there is a need to figure out whether the North is rejecting these proposals according to strategic decisions or it is rejecting them simply because they were pushed back in priority order. The official downplayed a recent statement by the North’s Asia-Pacific Peace Committee, which asked the U.S. to choose between a shift in its hostile policy toward North Korea and its own demise. The official said that the statement does not seem to show any differences from the North’s existing position.
Source : KBS News

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