Japan holds evacuation drill amid tension from N. Korea

Owen Stevens
June 4, 2017

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis turned up the heat on North Korea and its main benefactor, China, on Saturday, calling the North Koreans a "clear and present danger" and chastising the Chinese for coercive behavior in the South China Sea.

At their meeting, Inada and Mattis agreed that the recent series of ballistic missile launches by North Korea are impermissible, terming them as clear provocations against regional peace and stability.

Apart from using the US alliance to tackle its belligerent neighbour, Japan also wants the military partnership to exert influence on other parts of Asia, including the highly contested South China Sea, Inada said.

The US-Japan drill on Thursday has come after the Pentagon tested an interceptor system to strike down a dummy ballistic missile.

"North Korea poses a threat to us all".

Mattis spoke at Shanghai's annual Shangri-La Dialogue after President Trump withdrew from the Paris climate accord and German leaders attacked American leadership.

"We're working diplomatically, economically, we're trying to exhaust all possible alternatives to avert this race for a nuclear weapon in violation of. the United Nations' restrictions on North Korea's activities", he said. "We will still be there, and we will be there with you".

Though US military exercises in the Korean peninsula have been controversial in the global community, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley urged security council members to enforce the new sanctions.

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Lieutenant General He Lei, the head of China's delegation to the summit, said the "Asia-Pacific situation is generally safe and positive" but warned of "hotspot issues" flaring up from time to time.

The Security Council has already imposed six rounds of sanctions on North Korea, and the US and its allies have pushed for tougher measures in response to a wave of missile tests by Pyongyang.

In North Korea called the test act to those who were driven to despair. Japanese F-15s are also taking part in simulated combat with US F-18s.

"On May 30, the United States imperialists conducted a test simulating the interception of an intercontinental ballistic missile by our republic [the DPRK] at the Vandenberg base in California, which is a risky military provocation", the statement said, Sputnik reported. It is meant to protect South Korea from a potential North Korean missile strike.

Meanwhile, North Korea continues to test the patience of the USA and our allies.

This has fueled tensions in the Korean Peninsula. "And there is going to be fresh approaches taken".

According to local news, Russia's deputy UN envoy Vladimir Safronkov said, after the vote that although Russian Federation has supported the UN Security Council resolution 2356, imposing worldwide sanctions on four entities and 14 officials to the sanctions list, including the North's Strategic Rocket Force that may be contributing to North Korea's weapons programs but talks with defiant Pyongyang must be resumed to find a political solution.

Cheongju International Airport, which serves air traffic in central South Korea, has resumed flights to China that were suspended after the USA missile defense deployment row, the regional government said Sunday. "We can not and will not accept unilateral coercive changes to the status quo", he said.

Other reports by VgToday

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