Published: Tue, April 18, 2017
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Pence says 'era of strategic patience' is over

Pence says 'era of strategic patience' is over

A South Korean defense official said the action took place in Sinpo, a port city in eastern North Korea.

According to the US Pacific Command, the North Korean missile "blew up nearly immediately", adding that its type is yet to be identified.

But Pence and Hwang said they were troubled by retaliatory moves by China against the deployment in South Korea of a United States anti-missile system known as the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD). "This launch can possibly be a test for a new type of missile or an upgrade", Kim said.

China is urging a return to negotiations over North Korea's pursuit of nuclear weapons after Vice President Mike Pence warned that the USA has lost its patience with the regime. But the birthday of the Stalinist state's founder passed without action that may have provoked a USA response.

On a visit to South Korea, he is set to discuss ways to deal with Pyongyang amid speculation that leader Kim Jong-un could order a new nuclear test.

A United States navy strike group is moving towards the Korean peninsula.

The North has reiterated its constant refrain that it is ready for "war" with the US.

The North has traditionally used milestone events for demonstrations of military might.

Timed one day after the 105th anniversary of the birth of Kim Il Sung, the country's founder and the grandfather of current Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un, the failed launch represents yet another act that increases tension between North Korea and the U.S.

Though tensions had been rising dangerously between Washington and Pyongyang in the lead-up to the April 15 anniversary, the biggest holiday of the year in North Korea, the heightened rhetoric and saber-rattling on both sides could begin to cool down - a pattern that has been common in recent years, especially in the spring, when the US and South Korea stage their huge annual war games.

South Korean officials convened a meeting of the National Security Council in the wake of the failed test.

China, the North's sole major ally, and Russian Federation have both urged restraint, with Beijing's foreign minister Wang Yi warning Friday that "conflict could break out at any moment".

On Saturday, China's state news agency said that Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held phone conversations on preventing war on the peninsula and restarting peace negotiations.

Meanwhile, the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson and an accompanying battle group are steaming towards the region, a deployment seemed to be a show of strength. "The President has no further comment", US Defense Secretary James Mattis said.

This is the third visit to South Korea by a top official from the Trump administration. Stoking fears of an imminent attack is highly irresponsible.

Vice President Mike Pence, who will kick off a 10-day trip to Asia in Seoul, South Korea on Sunday, was also briefed within one hour of his departure. There was a high degree of confidence it was not an intercontinental ballistic missile, a United States official said on condition of anonymity. "The President and his military team are aware of North Korea's most recent unsuccessful missile launch". The timing of the test, coinciding with Pence's trip and a day after the military parade, would suggest deliberate defiance.

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