The United States warned North Korea on Wednesday that its missile launch program would have “consequences,” while communicating with Pyongyang for “dialogue” and a willingness to listen to its “concerns.”
According to Joe Biden’s government, Pyongyang has made 13 launches so far this year, including three ICBMs, with a long range of more than 5,500 km.
A senior administration official told reporters that he suspected North Korea was organizing “new provocations” for this month, and said Washington was “preparing” for this in coordination with its partners in Seoul and Tokyo.
“All our actions are aimed at making clear to North Korea that its escalation has consequences and that the international community will never accept its weapons development program as usual,” he said.
The same source noted that the US Treasury has already imposed sanctions to prevent North Korea from accessing technology that would allow it to develop its missile program.
The official told Pyongyang that “the only viable option is dialogue,” that Washington does not have a “hostile” stance against North Korea and that the Joe Biden administration is willing to “listen to Pyongyang’s concerns.”
“We remain committed to the path of dialogue and hope that the North Koreans will accept our invitation to engage in serious and ongoing dialogue to advance common goals, including the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” he said.
On March 25, the United States attempted at the United Nations (UN) Security Council to tighten sanctions against North Korea, but Russia and China opposed and insisted on reducing sanctions to stimulate negotiations with Pyongyang.
In this regard, the US official asked Moscow and Beijing to work with the United States to “send a clear message” that North Korean launches are “unacceptable.”
He particularly stressed that China, Pyongyang’s ally, shares “the interest in maintaining stability on the Korean Peninsula.”
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