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Cannot be complacent about potential threat of N. Korean missiles - UK minister

21 April 2017

Pence told reporters President Donald Trump was confident that economic and diplomatic pressure from the "family of nations" had a chance of compelling North Korea to cooperate.

The new forum for trade talks was launched by President Trump and Mr Abe during the Japanese leader's visit to the USA in February.

The U.S. trade relationship with South Korea is "falling short", with the free-trade deal between the countries under review, Vice President Mike Pence said Tuesday.

Pence on Monday had travelled to the tense zone dividing the two Koreas, where he warned North Korea's leaders that after years of testing the US and South Korea with its nuclear ambitions, "the era of strategic patience is over".

"While all options are on the table", Pence said, "President Trump is determined to work closely with Japan, with South Korea, with all our allies in the region, and with China" to resolve the problem.

"From my understanding, we haven't had any business with the North Korean market since a year ago; North Korea has never been a major focus of ours", said the official, who only gave his last name, Gu.

Pence and Abe agreed that they needed to persuade China to play a larger role in dealing with North Korea, a Japanese government spokesman said.

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During an interview with the BBC in Pyongyang, North Korea's Vice Foreign Minister Han Song-ryol said if the United States was "reckless" enough to use military means, his country would engage in an "all-out war".

On April 5, North Korea reportedly launched a ballistic missile from Sinpho, South Hamgyong province, in the direction of the Sea of Japan.

"We should stay on our toes to protect our territory and people's lives", Hwang said.

Those sessions are aimed at reassuring businesses that trade in the United States is worth their while.

"The regime is now developing intercontinental ballistic missiles which would be capable of delivering a nuclear strike on the mainland United States".

Jean-Francois Fiorina, a professor of Geopolitics at Grenoble Ecole de Management in France, said Donald Trump believes he can have an influence on the situation in North Korea - something he said is not the case. "In the middle of him talking with North Korea, I'm going to hit them with currency manipulation", he said.

"The US is disturbing global peace and stability and insisting on the gangster-like logic that its invasion of a sovereign state is "decisive, just and proportionate" and contributes to "defending" the worldwide order in its bid to apply it to the Korean peninsula as well", the ambassador said.

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Pence said Trump sees the talks as a way to improve business ties with Japan and is hoping for quick results. "Thus, we don't believe there is a need at this point to try to predict measures that will be taken by the USA administration".

Abe said Japan likewise hopes for peaceful dialogue with Pyongyang, "but at the same time, dialogue for the sake of dialogue is valueless".

"Of course I think that any country will feel that political diplomatic means are of course the first choice", Wang said.

That is a message Pence will take to upcoming stops this week in Jakarta and Sydney.

Trump campaigned for office on an "America First" platform, saying he would boost USA manufacturing jobs and shrink the country's trade deficit with countries like Japan. China is defending its trade practices with North Korea after Chinese-made vehicles were seen carrying ballistic missiles during a military parade despite global sanctions against selling military hardware to Pyongyang.

While Japan's trade surplus with the United States is much smaller than China's, Trump has decried the imbalance, especially in auto exports.

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