Pence Admits Syria, Afghanistan Were Used as Props to Warn North Korea

Mike Pence kicks off Japan talks, both sides seek 'near term' results

Trump on the campaign trail frequently promised to label China a currency manipulator and complained about Beijing's trade policies - at one point saying the U.S.

Pence, inspecting the DMZ, warned Pyongyang that after years of testing the US and South Korea with its nuclear ambitions, "the era of strategic patience is over".

Trump made the comment to a CNN reporter after kicking off the 139th annual Easter egg roll with First Lady Melania Trump. However, he referred to the recent USA military strike in Syria as an indication of how far the government was willing to go.

"China expresses serious concern with recent trends about North Korea's nuclear and missile development".

Victor Cha, the Korea Chair at the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), said the "provocation window" between South Korean elections and North Korean provocations has become narrower over time, referring to database collected over the past 60 years.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence says the U.S. will not relent until it achieves its objective of ensuring the Korean Peninsula is free of nuclear weapons.

He said the Trump administration's deployment of the Carl Vinson nuclear carrier task group to waters off the Korean Peninsula again "proves the United States reckless moves for invading the DPRK have reached a serious phase of its scenario".

VP Pence confirmed that all options are on the table to deal with threat.

In Moscow, the Russian foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, told reporters on Monday that he hoped there would be "no unilateral actions like those we saw recently in Syria and that the United States will follow the line that President Trump repeatedly voiced during the election campaign".

Lu Chao, a Chinese expert on Korean studies at the Liaoning Academy of Social Sciences, was among multiple analysts that told the state-affiliated tabloid Global Times Tuesday that if North Korea did not refrain from conducting its sixth nuclear test, it would "definitely trigger" more intense United Nations sanctions, and that China will implement them.

On Monday, Pence traveled to the tense Demilitarized Zone dividing North and South Korea, where he warned North Korea's leaders that after years of testing the US and South Korea with its nuclear ambitions, "the era of strategic patience is over".

Pence made the remark during a meeting with representatives of the US Chamber of Commerce here before leaving for Japan, the second stopover in his 10-day Asia-Pacific tour.

"Just in the past two weeks, the world witnessed the strength and resolve of our new president in actions taken in Syria and Afghanistan", he said speaking alongside South Korea's acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn.

As Vice President Pence said yesterday, the "era of strategic patience is over".

Pence noted that Washington's policy has changed towards the isolated state.

North Korea also appeared to reveal two new types of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) during Saturday's parade.

Late previous year, China, which is believed to be the only country buying North Korean coal, announced it would slash its imports in line with worldwide sanctions after a ballistic missile test. Pyeongyang insists it needs strong arsenal including nuclear weapons to protect itself from the invasion of the antagonist U.S. forces.

The White House on Monday reiterated that China has not manipulated its currency since U.S. President Donald Trump took office in January.

"This is the limit of double standards", Kim of the Foreign Ministry said.

North Korea also said that it will conduct nuke tests at will.

It is not clear if and in what context Xi said so, nor is it certain whether it is an accurate quote or an error that possibly occurred in the process of interpretation.

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