Syria strike 'vindicates' North Korea's nuclear choice

Hagiuda said that given the Trump-Xi meeting, the Japanese and US leaders discussed how Japan, the United States, South Korea and China should deal with North Korea while working with one another.

President Donald Trump's previous announcement on Sunday that the US was prepared to act independently against North Korea, should China not assist in demanding a halt to their nuclear weapons program, was reinforced by the surprise USA missile attack against Syria on Thursday.

"We completely agreed that it's very important for Japan and cooperate and work together closely and the unity among Japan, U.S. and South Korea is important", Abe told reporters, according to NHK.

The missile, believed to be a type known as Pukguksong-2 or a modified version of it, was sacked nearly vertically and reached an altitude of 189 km, a South Korean military official said, adding that it has yet to be analyzed whether the launch was a success or not.

With some observers now talking about the possibility of US military action against North Korea, a lawmaker from Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party on Sunday said such a scenario was unlikely as a military strike against the North could precipitate a nuclear attack on the South or Japan.

The response came with the grand bluster normally included in statements by North Korea. "We have no further comment".

Pyongyang has shown no sign of reining in a missile testing program ultimately aimed at securing the capability to deliver a nuclear warhead to the continental United States. On Thursday, Trump ordered the surprise attack against a military air base in Syria, signaling he was prepared to act in the protection of US interests. Japanese officials later revealed that one of the missiles splashed into waters around 200 km off Japan's northeastern coast.

After arriving in Seoul on Monday, the Chinese envoy in charge of the North Korean issue will talk with South Korea's representative Kim Hong-kyun, according to the ministry.

The North has carried out five nuclear tests - two of them past year - and expert satellite imagery analysis suggests it could well be preparing for a sixth. Liquid propellant might have been applied again in the latest test. The United States has spoken enough about North Korea.

Military and intelligence officials told the network that the ideas were given to Trump by the National Security Council in advance of the his meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping this week in Florida.

However, China has for a long time insisted that the crux of the North Korean nuclear issue is a problem between Washington and Pyongyang.

However, Pyongyang's response suggested the reclusive state was determined to continue with its nuclear weapons programme.

But the United States has already turned down the "double-suspension" proposal. The report did not name the official, which is common in KCNA reports.

Trump has recently threatened unilateral action against Pyongyang if Beijing fails to help curb its neighbor's nuclear weapons program.

  • Leroy Wright