News ID: 191038
Published: 0758 GMT April 17, 2017

Lavrov cautions United States on North Korea moves

Lavrov cautions United States on North Korea moves

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said he hopes the US will not take unilateral action against North Korea as it did recently in Syria.

Lavrov was responding to US Vice President Mike Pence’s statement on Monday in South Korea that the “era of strategic patience is over,” with regard to North Korea, AP reported.

The US vice president put North Korea on notice, warning that recent US strikes in Syria and Afghanistan showed that the resolve of President Donald Trump should not be tested, Reuters reported.

According to AP, Lavrov told journalists in Moscow that if Pence’s words can be understood as a threat to take unilateral action against North Korea, “then this is a very risky path.”

He said, “I hope there will be no unilateral actions like those we saw recently in Syria and that the US will follow the line that President Trump repeatedly voiced during the election campaign."

Russia has recently warned over a possible US action against North Korea.

On April 7, the US carried out a missile strike on the Shayrat airfield near Syria’s Homs in response to an alleged chemical attack on a terrorist-held town in Idlib Province, the blame for which Washington pinned on the Syrian government. On April 13, the US military said it had conducted a strike on a Daesh tunnel complex in Achin district in Afghanistan’s Nangarhar Province.

North Korea lambasted the strike against Syria, saying at the time that it was “an unforgivable act of aggression” that also proved that Pyongyang’s decision to develop nuclear weapons was “the right choice a million times over.”

“The US missile attack against Syria is a clear and unforgivable act of aggression against a sovereign state and we strongly condemn this” KCNA quoted an unnamed spokesman for the North Korean Foreign Ministry as saying at the time.

Pence said during the Monday visit to South Korea that the North needs to abandon its weapons program and stop testing ballistic missiles.

Pence and South Korean acting president Hwang Kyo-ahn, speaking a day after a failed missile test by the North and two days after a huge display of missiles in Pyongyang, also said they would strengthen anti-North Korea defenses by moving ahead with the early deployment of the THAAD missile-defense system.


China’ reaction


China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said Monday that tensions need to be eased on the Korean peninsula to bring the escalating dispute there to a peaceful resolution.

Lu said China wants to resume multi-party negotiations that ended in stalemate in 2009. He suggested plans to deploy a US missile defense system in South Korea were damaging its relations with China.


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