Tuesday, 19 November, 2019

North Korea warning: Kim fires 'two unidentified missiles' as conflict tensions explode

South Korea President Moon Jae-in South Korea President Moon Jae-in
Russell Knight | 16 August, 2019, 16:50

It called Moon - who has long favoured dialogue with the North - an "impudent guy rare to be found", for hoping for a resumption of inter-Korean talks while continuing military drills with Washington.

"In spite of a series of worrying actions taken by North Korea recently, the momentum for dialogue remains unshaken", Moon said in a speech marking Korea's independence from Japan's 1910-45 colonial rule.

The South's Moon said in a Liberation Day address on Thursday it was only through his policy of Korean national peace that dialogue with the North was still possible.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, speaking at a ceremony honoring Japan's war dead on Thursday said his people had engraved the "lessons of history deep in our hearts", and pledged never to repeat the devastation of war.

North Korea fired two more short-range projectiles into the sea off its east coast on Friday morning, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said in a statement.

The statement also criticized South Korea's recent acquisition of advanced US -made fighter jets and said it would be "senseless" for Moon to believe that inter-Korean dialogue will automatically begin after the end of the ongoing U.S.

"We have nothing more to talk about with the South Korean authorities and we have no desire to sit down with them again", it said in a statement run by the KCNA state news agency.

Kelly said Trump wants a deal he can sell to Fox News and his voters as a foreign policy triumph, even if it damages USA alliances in Asia, but he is surrounded by people such as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and national security adviser John Bolton who take harder-line positions.

Pyongyang has recently rebuffed Seoul, saying nuclear talks will be "strictly" between the North and the United States and refusing to hold separate dialogue with the South.

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South Korea's presidential office said national security adviser Chung Eui-yong was presiding over an emergency National Security Council meeting about the launches and President Moon Jae-in was being briefed on the developments.

Seoul's Unification Ministry said the North's comments are not "consistent" with the spirit of inter-Korean agreements, including the Panmunjom Declaration signed by Moon and Kim in April previous year.

Some analysts believe North Korea's latest provocation is meant to pressure Seoul into pushing cross-border economic ties and persuading Washington to make concessions in any future talks over Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programme.

The South Korean military said the projectiles were fired from near the city of Tongchon, and flew some 230 kilometres (143 miles) before falling into the Sea of Japan, which is also known as the East Sea.

The spokesperson repeated criticism that the joint U.S. However, little progress has been made on the North's stated commitment to denuclearise.

The United States has so far rejected North Korea's demands for sanctions relief in exchange for piecemeal deals toward partially surrendering its nuclear capabilities and urged Pyongyang to commit to completely relinquishing its nuclear and missile program. "We want to clearly point out that (the comments) won't help the improvement of inter-Korean relations at all", a ministry official added.

But Pyongyang's message was clear: Moon has no right to talk about peace while conducting military exercises.

However, the spokesman left open the possibility of talks with the United States.

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