(WASHINGTON) — The topic of North Korea dominated Secretary of State Kerry’s press avail with the South Korean Foreign Minister Tuesday, where Kerry made it clear that United States will not tolerate the growing threat coming from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK).
“We have heard an extraordinary amount of unacceptable rhetoric from the North Korean government in the last days. So let me be perfectly clear here today. The United States will defend and protect ourselves and our treaty ally, the Republic of Korea,” said Kerry.
He spoke specifically about the actions of the rogue nation’s young leader and warned that the United States is taking the moves seriously.
“What Kim Jong Un has been choosing to do is provocative, dangerous, reckless, and the United States will not accept the DPRK as a nuclear state,” said Kerry. “The United States will do what is necessary to defend ourselves and defend our allies Korea and Japan.”
Kerry called North Korea’s announcement that it plans to restart the nuclear facility at Yongdong a “direct violation” of international standards.
“It would be a provocative act and completely contrary to the road that we have traveled all of these years from the agreed framework forward,” he said. “We’ll have to wait and see what happens with respect to that, but it is a direct violation of their international obligations and would be a very serious step.”
The secretary tied the continued threat from North Korea to the talks with Iran, set to begin again on Friday, saying that the United States and its allies are prepared to negotiate with both countries to reduce the nuclear threat, saying the Obama administration had no other ambitions outside of making the world safer.
“The last thing the world needs is more nuclear nations at the very time that the nuclear nations are trying to reduce their current numbers of nuclear weapons and control this danger.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Roshni Majumdar, CNN
Stephanie Halasz, Jason Hanna and Livia Borghese, CNN
Ralph Ellis and Eliott C. McLaughlin, CNN
Billy Hallowell, Deseret News