Seoul, Russia propose economic cooperation with North Korea in Far East

CHINA-DIPLOMACY-BRICS

Moon in a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday urged Moscow to support stronger sanctions against North Korea, but Putin called for talks with North Korea, saying sanctions are not a solution to the country's nuclear and missile development.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Thursday that he agreed with Russian President Vladimir Putin that North Korea's latest nuclear test is a serious threat to regional peace and a challenge to global nuclear non-proliferation regime.

Putin met South Korea's Moon Jae-in on the sidelines of an economic summit in the eastern Russian city of Vladivostok amid mounting worldwide concern that their neighbor plans more weapons tests, possibly a long-range missile launch before a weekend anniversary.

North Korea's latest nuclear test on Sunday rattled its neighboring countries, prompting the United States to speak about a "military response" and South Korea to conduct major military exercises.

North Korea might launch an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) on Saturday, as the country marks the anniversary of its founding, South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon on Thursday.

He also said it was "ridiculous" that the United States first slapped Russian Federation with sanctions carried in the same bill that penalised North Korea, and "then asked us to help impose sanctions on North Korea". But unless Putin gets on board with the US strategy, which is to increase pressure on North Korea before contemplating concessions, his increased intervention is unhelpful.

Declaring that "enough is enough", Haley said existing measures not worked and accused North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un of "begging for war" with the country's sixth and most powerful nuclear test.

"We should not give in to emotions and push Pyongyang into a corner", Putin said during a news conference after meeting with Moon on Wednesday in Vladivostock.

South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon admitted that the decision to deploy the THAAD was hard but necessary in order to "protect the lives and safety of the people in response to the sophistication of North Korea's nuclear and missile programmes", according to Yonhap agency. At Putin's suggestion, the two leaders then went for an unscheduled stroll along the beachfront in the Siberian port city and visited a booth promoting the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.

The remark came in a late-night phone conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin on September 4, which capped a long day of trying to rally leaders of major powers against the North's fast-advancing nuclear weapons program, while beefing up the South's own military capabilities.

China is by far North Korea's biggest trading partner, accounting for 92 percent of two-way trade previous year.

Beijing said it agreed the United Nations should take more action against North Korea.

China lodged another stern protest over the THAAD deployment on Thursday.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang also reiterated Beijing's opposition to South Korea's deployment of the US Terminal High-Altitude Area Defence System, also known as THAAD, which is meant to protect against North Korean missile attacks. The trade issue is unrelated to North Korea but has been a source of tension between the two allies.

Sunday's test, North Korea's first since Trump took office, was a "perfect success" and confirmed the precision and technology of the bomb, the regime said. The Russian leader will meet with Abe later in the day.

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