Mattis slams N. Korea 'provocation' but says focus on diplomacy

Donald Trump

Russian Federation on Thursday blocked a UN Security Council statement calling for "significant measures" in response to North Korea's test launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile, arguing that the missile was in fact of medium range.

Mattis went on to say, "I believe President Trump has made it clear, we don't set red lines, we deal with reality, and we'll deal with any reality". "It's one that requires calculated increases in pressure, allow the regime to respond to that pressure, and it takes a little time to let these things happen". On trade, Trump is expected to, again, push Xi to level the playing field between the USA and China and reduce the United States trade deficit with Beijing.

But US military actions in the South China Sea are antagonizing Beijing.

Haley said the USA would soon draft a new resolution against North Korea that would include tougher sanctions.

"The missile has been determined to indeed be intercontinental...and could reach Alaska and perhaps even parts of the Western coast of the United States", Manning says. But Russia contested a Security Council statement on Thursday calling for "significant measures" in response, signaling that it might not back a final resolution putting fresh sanctions in place. "We stand ready to provide options if they are necessary".

Trump last Friday spoke about heightening tensions with North Korea during a news conference alongside South Korea's President Moon Jae-in. Trump could have worked more closely with China, but there's no evidence the Chinese would have actually allowed North Korea to fail by withdrawing their trade.

Late on Thursday, court filings made public disclosed that USA authorities were trying to seize millions of dollars from companies that deal with North Korea, including the country's military, from eight large global banks.

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"We're headed, I'm afraid, toward the real possibility of a nuclear crisis", Woolsey said, during an appearance on CNN Wednesday.

Tillerson said a Chinese and Russian proposal for the US and South Korea to suspend joint military exercises in return for a freeze in North Korean weapons testing was unacceptable as it would freeze North Korea's programs at too high a level of capability.

Australia will press ahead with a missile defence program to protect its forces, but a United States shield system isn't appropriate, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said. However, in the same breath Capt. Davis said, "We if we wanted to shoot it down we've could have".

"He should just stop threatening us", Sunmi Lee weighed in.

But the North isn't there yet, and many analysts say it needs more tests to flawless such an arsenal. But, he added, sanctions "should not harm the livelihood and normal humanitarian need of the DPRK", using the initials of North Korea's official name.

Over dinner, Abe "conveyed approval" for US sanctions against Chinese companies that deal with North Korea and said Japan has been monitoring the movements of those businesses, Maruyama added.

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