North Korea's missile not a threat against US - Mattis

North Korea's missile not a threat against US - Mattis

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said: "The US will use all measures necessary to defend itself, but we also keep our channels of communication open".

The lack of a sound, unified strategy would waste the time and resources of any members of the worldwide community who join the campaign to bring North Korea to talks.

From saying just days ago talks could be unconditional, America's top diplomat has been rowed back by the White House.

On Friday, Mr Tillerson reiterated Mr Trump's position.

Last month, North Korea said it had successfully tested a new type of ICBM that could reach all of the USA mainland and South Korea and US-based experts said data from the November 29 test appeared to support that.

The U.S. and close allies South Korea and Japan called for increased pressure on the North to get Kim's government to negotiate the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

The back and forth reflected the awkward gulf between Mr Tillerson and Mr Trump, who has threatened to "totally destroy" the country.

Blaming China for strangling the North Korean economy, the secluded state announced that it is marching along towards a fully fledged nuclear weapons programme. That may leave North Korea [with the only option of making] concessions'. Kim Jong-un is seeing disunity, even within the United States administrative, and he is now armed with sophisticated weaponry, ready to strike out if threatened.

The UN's political affairs chief, Jeffrey Feltman, returned at the weekend from talks in Pyongyang - the first visit to the North by a high-ranking UN official since 2011.

The UN has suggested holding talks to figure out the substance of negotiations further down the line, and a military-to-military hotline to dampen risks of conflict. Wu Haitao. He called for dialogue, an end to United States military exercises, and an end to "mutual blaming".

North Korea's United Nations ambassador, Ja Song Nam, did not mention the possibility of talks with the U.S.in his rare appearance before the Security Council on Friday.

He said himself immediately after the test that the missile had gone higher than any previous North Korean launch and that it was part of a research and development effort "to continue building ballistic missiles that can threaten everywhere in the world, basically". It has conducted six nuclear tests so far.

Sanctions aimed at punishing the North Korean regime are hampering the ability of aid groups to operate inside the country, triggering warnings that the global campaign is harming ordinary North Koreans. "And we hope they will agree to have a dialogue", he told reporters in Bangkok.

North Korean citizens observe the sixth anniversary of former leader Kim Jong-il's death by bowing before the statues of Kim and his father Kim Il-sung at Mansudae Hill in Pyongyang on December 17.

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