Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

North Korea accuses United States of creating situation for nuclear war

North Korea accuses United States of creating situation for nuclear war

US Vice President Mike Pence said Tuesday the Donald Trump administration is to "review and reform" the free trade pact with South Korea, citing growing trade deficits and "too many barriers" for American firms.

Pence said, "We appreciate the challenging times in which the people of Japan live with increasing provocations from across the Sea of Japan".

Pence told Abe that the Japan-U.S. alliance is the "cornerstone" of peace and security in Northeast Asia and the Trump administration places a high value on its commitment to the region through the alliance. The foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said tensions need to be eased on the Korean peninsula to bring the escalating dispute there to a peaceful resolution.

Pence urged the business community to help "level that playing field" between Korea and the United States.

The vice president spoke at a news conference following the Japan-U.S. economic forum in the afternoon with Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso.

President Donald Trump on Tuesday dismissed speculation that he was backing away from his tough talk on China, despite demonizing the country repeatedly during the 2016 presidential campaign.

"As everybody knows, nowadays the USA without any hesitation perpetrates military attacks and threatens a sovereign state while claiming "peace by strength", Ambassador Kim said".

Pence reiterated that after years of North Korea testing the United States and its neighbors in East Asia with its nuclear ambitions, the US "era of strategic patience is over".

President Trump during an interview that aired early Tuesday denied he had softened his stance on China.

"The time has really come for North Korea to get the message".

A Japanese official says a difference in approach remains with the US despite an agreement on a framework for new bilateral economic talks. After taking office he immediately withdrew from the multi-lateral Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal that was to include the U.S., Japan and ten other Pacific Rim countries, that together accounted for 40 percent of the world economy.

This report assessed that the bilateral trade pact "provides meaningful market access commitments across virtually all major services sectors" and "also has improved Korea's business environment for US exporters while strengthening and expanding USA ties with a key strategic partner in Asia". Barack Obama's policy of "strategic patience" on North Korea was neither about patience, nor about strategy.

"North Korea would do well not to test his resolve or the strength of the armed forces of the United States in this region", he added. South Korea hosts 28,500 USA troops to counter the threat from the North.

The loss of USA participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership was a blow to Japan following strenuous negotiations, especially over opening its long-protected farm sector to more imports, especially of dairy and meat products. In 2016, US goods exports to Korea, its sixth largest trading partner, totaled $42.3 billion, which was down 2.8 percent compared to the previous year.

For now, both sides seem keen to downplay potential for conflict. He said that the dialogue could lead to formal talks on a U.S. -Japan trade agreement, but that he would leave that decision to the future.

"It is a little bit early to say just what forms things will take but we are certainly eager to increase our trade relationships with Japan and to do so in the form of an agreement", - Wilbur Ross talks about a possible FTA.

As Indiana governor, Mr Pence saw first-hand the impact of Japanese car-makers Toyota, Honda and Subaru, whose factories employ thousands of people in his home state.

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