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Trump maintains pressure on North Korea, says ready to strike

Ⓒ AFP – JIM WATSON – |

Donald Trump maintained a high level of tension on the North Korean record, saying that the military option was “ready to use” against Pyongyang, but he also had to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping, whose country Called for restraint.

Faced with an unprecedented escalation between Washington and Pyongyang, China urged the two countries to “exercise caution” and urged Pyongyang to avoid “demonstrations of strength.”

From his golf in Bedminster, near New York, where he spends his holidays, the American president announced Friday that he would meet Friday evening with his Chinese counterpart.

“We are working very closely with China and other countries,” Donald Trump said after a working meeting with his diplomatic team, especially Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

China is the main economic partner of North Korea and its role is crucial to the effectiveness of the economic sanctions against North Korea to force it to curb its nuclear and ballistic programs.

Speaking of the speeches in front of the cameras and on Twitter, Mr. Trump persisted in the belligerent register adopted three days ago: “If he does anything about Guam, or another American territory, or an ally of the United States, He will really regret it and he will soon regret it, “he said, referring to young North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un.

Does not his attitude help to raise the tension to a dangerous level? “My detractors say this because it’s me.” If someone were to say exactly the same thing, they would say, “What a great statement!”, He said, assuring that “tens of millions of Americans” Were happy that a president “speaks loud and clear” for their country and its allies. He said he had the support of Japan and South Korea.

A few hours earlier, Mr. Trump – who was quoted by Pyongyang as a “heinous fan of nuclear war” – pointed out on Twitter that the military solutions were “completely in place” and “ready for use” if Korea Of the North behaved imprudently.

Until the announcement of a discussion with Xi Jinping, no sign of appeasement was noticeable. The next joint military exercises between Seoul and Washington, during which the tensions on the Korean peninsula are tending to worsen, begin soon, around 21 August.

– Moscow ‘very worried’ –

Beijing advocates a “negotiated” resolution, backing back Washington and Pyongyang.

China has repeatedly proposed a double “moratorium”: the simultaneous halt of North Korean nuclear and ballistic tests and the joint military maneuvers of Washington and Seoul.

This rise in tensions between the United States and North Korea weighs heavily on the financial markets and worries many world leaders.

In Moscow, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said he was “very worried” about the “very high” conflict risks between the United States and North Korea.

“It is clearly time for all parties to focus on ways to reduce tensions,” said Stéphane Dujarric, spokesman for UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

“I do not see any military solution to this conflict … I consider the verbal escalation a wrong answer,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned Friday.

“No one likes peaceful solutions as much as President Trump,” tried to reassure Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

A White House official also said that the billionaire’s words should not be seen as a sign of imminent military action. “There are military plans for almost all the crises in the world … These plans are continually updated and present options to the president. There is nothing new,” he said. Said under cover of anonymity.

The US president promised Friday a “big press conference” Monday in Washington, without further details.

– Plan of offensive towards Guam –

The US military said on Friday it was “ready to fight” if the US president gave the order.

The Pentagon currently has 28,500 soldiers south of the 38th parallel: air force, army, naval infantry (the famous Marines) and, of course, the navy. To protect the terrain from Kim Jong-Un’s medium-range missiles, the United States deployed a missile shield, the THAAD, which can intercept launchers at high altitudes.

In response to the change in tone in Washington, North Korea threatened to launch an attack near the US island of Guam, a US strategic outpost in the Pacific.

The North Korean army is to present a plan for an offensive against Guam by mid-August, according to North Korean military.

Shooting at Guam would place Washington in a delicate position: if the United States did not attempt to intercept them, their credibility would take a hit and Pyongyang would feel the wings to conduct an ICCM (intercontinental missile test) full-scale.

The North Korean site 38 North also claims that satellite imagery suggests that North Korea could prepare new submarine ballistic missile tests.

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