Trump fires back at Kim in war of nuclear words

Remigio Civitarese
Settembre 23, 2017

If Pyongyang makes good on the threat, it would mean marrying the two most powerful weapons known to man: a fusion-type nuclear weapon and a ballistic missile.

Though the majority of North Korea's imports come from China, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said "This action is directed at everyone" and the steps are "in no way specifically directed at China".

South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who addressed the UN General Assembly, said sanctions were needed to bring Pyongyang to the negotiating table, but Seoul was not seeking North Korea's collapse.

While Trump's speech grabbed headlines for his warning that the United States will "completely destroy" North Korea if forced to defend itself or its allies, he extended his outrage to the 1977 abduction of "sweet 13-year-old Japanese girl" Megumi Yokota, who has become symbolic of the abductees' plight.

Russian Federation urged calm on Friday after U.S. President Donald Trump called North Korean leader Kim Jong Un a "madman".

The warning was delivered by North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho in NY, according to comments published by South Korea's Yonhap news agency.

Some analysts saw a clear sign that North Korea will ramp up its already brisk pace of weapons testing, which has included missiles meant to target US forces throughout Asia and on the USA mainland.

It imposes a 180-day ban on vessels and aircraft that have visited North Korea from visiting the United States.

Meanwhile, asked at the trilateral meeting if dialogue was still possible with North Korea, Trump quipped, "Why not?"

Earlier Friday Kim blasted Trump as a "mentally deranged United States dotard" who will "pay dearly" for threatening to destroy North Korea.

She said that people in Pyongyang openly support Kim Jong-un because they would be killed if they didn't and that this applied even to "his inner-circle".

Troy Stangarone, senior director of the Korea Economic Institute of America, a think tank in Washington, said the sanctions' success will depend on the Treasury's determination to go after its targets and the extent of North Korea's transactions that are outside of USA reach. "I must assume his (Kim Jong Un's) claims are true - I know his aspirations certainly are", Admiral Harry Harris, the head of PACOM, said in a June speech.

The Chinese Ministry of Commerce said in a statement that exports of condensate oil, liquefied natural gas as well as textile imports from the North are now prohibited.

South Korea's Unification Ministry said neither of the two men who ruled North Korea before Kim Jong-Un - his father Kim Jong-Il, and his grandfather and national founder Kim Il-Sung - had ever issued a similar statement.

The North Korean delegation to the United Nations, which on Tuesday walked out of the chamber before President Donald Trump gave his speech, could not immediately be reached for comment. Kim described Trump as "a madman" and "a frightened dog" and "a mentally deranged U.S".

Instead of fully enforcing sanctions against the North, Beijing has turned the screws on South Korea - orchestrating an embargo on its goods in China, severely curtailing Chinese tourism in South Korea, and harassing auto manufacturer Kia and other South Korean businesses that invested in good faith in the Middle Kingdom. Reuters and other media outlets reported that Ri told reporters, "Mr. Trump must be dreaming if he thought he could intimidate us with his barking".

Abe demanded that all states strictly and fully enforce the series of U.N. Security Council resolutions targeting North Korea, saying the world must unite to make Pyongyang change its policies.

China appeared to heed Washington's call in turn Thursday, with Trump expressing gratitude for what he said was the Chinese central bank's decision to order commercial banks to stop doing business with North Korea.

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