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  • Mattis says North Korean ICBM not yet a 'capable threat' against US

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Friday that analysis continued on North Korea's most recent missile test, but he did not believe its intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) posed an imminent threat to the United S

    December 16, 2017 07:34 am JST
  • Kono, Tillerson on same page over North Korea

    NEW YORK (Kyodo) -- Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Friday reaffirmed the need to step up pressure on North Korea with an eye on denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.Kono also asked Tillerson to fully

    December 16, 2017 07:18 am JST
  • North Korea must 'earn its way back' to negotiations: Tillerson

    UNITED NATIONS -- A sustained pause in North Korea's threatening behavior is needed before it can enter into talks with the U.S., Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told a U.N. Security Council meeting Friday on Pyongyang's nuclear and missile develop

    December 16, 2017 06:41 am JST
  • North Korea's cell phone users triple

    SEOUL -- The number of cell phone users in North Korea has more than tripled in five years to 3.61 million in 2016, South Korea's national statistical office said Friday.The figure marked an 11% year-on-year increase, Statistics Korea said, based on

    December 16, 2017 05:49 am JST
  • US still demands action from North Korea before any talks

    WASHINGTON -- Although U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson caused a stir this week when he suggested a possible dialogue with North Korea "without preconditions," Washington's official stance -- that the Pyongyang regime must first take action tow

    December 16, 2017 04:26 am JST
  • Japan releases video of crackdown on North Korean fishing boats

    TOKYO -- The Japan Coast Guard released images Friday showing its clampdown against North Korean fishing boats operating illegally in Japan's exclusive economic zone around Yamatotai, an area in the Sea of Japan known for squid and shrimp.Since Sept

    December 15, 2017 11:38 pm JST
  • Japan to assess defense capabilities amid North Korea threats: Abe

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Friday that Japan will assess the capabilities it needs to protect its population amid the growing North Korean nuclear and missile threat, signaling his intention to accelerate debate early next year

    December 15, 2017 10:52 pm JST
  • North Korea to make rare appearance at UN Security Council meeting

    NEW YORK -- North Korea's ambassador to the United Nations, Ja Song Nam, is expected to attend a ministerial-level meeting of the Security Council on Friday, according to Japan's Permanent Mission to the world body.It is highly unusual for the North

    December 15, 2017 03:16 pm JST
  • US North Korea negotiator says direct diplomacy needed

    BANGKOK (Reuters) -- The chief U.S. negotiator for North Korea said on Friday the United States should engage in direct diplomacy with Pyongyang alongside sanctions imposed over its nuclear programme.U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson offered on

    December 15, 2017 01:29 pm JST
  • Japan expands unilateral sanctions on North Korea

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- The Japanese government decided Friday to freeze the assets of 19 more North Korean companies as part of its unilateral sanctions in response to the North's repeated defiance of a U.N. ban on nuclear and ballistic missile tests.The

    December 15, 2017 12:21 pm JST
  • Trump discusses North Korea situation with Putin: White House

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- U.S. President Trump spoke by phone on Thursday with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the two leaders "discussed working together to resolve the very dangerous situation in North Korea," the White House said in a statemen

    December 15, 2017 10:10 am JST
  • Moon and Xi agree on avoiding new Korean war, but little else

    BEIJING -- The leaders of China and South Korea affirmed a shared goal of a peaceful end to the standoff with North Korea, but despite the effort at solidarity, their summit here Thursday reinforced the view of how far bilateral relations still have

    December 15, 2017 06:45 am JST
  • North Korea says naval blockade would be 'act of war', vows action

    SEOUL (Reuters) -- North Korea on Thursday warned it would take "merciless self-defensive" measures should the United States enforce a naval blockade, which Pyongyang sees as "an act of war", the isolated nation's state media said.Citing a foreign m

    December 14, 2017 10:51 pm JST
  • U.N. political chief worried about risk of Korean conflict

    NEW YORK (Kyodo) -- The risk of conflict looms large on the Korean Peninsula with the situation exacerbated by a lack of communication, making it crucial to promote dialogue, the U.N. political affairs chief said Wednesday."I do feel strongly that t

    December 14, 2017 09:27 pm JST
  • Guterres ready to visit North Korea if opportunity arises

    TOKYO -- United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Thursday said that he is willing to visit North Korea for peace negotiations if there is an opportunity to do so.Guterres attended a press conference at the Japan National Press Club Thur

    December 14, 2017 08:23 pm JST
  • Guterres, Abe reaffirm vow to maximize pressure on North Korea

    TOKYO -- United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday reaffirmed their determination to keep up the pressure on North Korea to rid the country of its nuclear weapons.In his first trip to Japan a

    December 14, 2017 03:40 pm JST
  • A spike in 'ghost boats' points to North Korea's growing desperation

    TOKYO On a chilly November night, half an hour before midnight, the local police in the northern Japanese prefecture of Akita received an emergency call. The caller said there were suspicious foreigners on her front porch.When officers arrived at th

    December 14, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • William Pesek: The odds of a Trump trade war just got higher

    The administration of Donald Trump last month invoked powers no White House has in a quarter century, and it did so to probe Chinese aluminum imports.Normally, the U.S. Commerce Department reacts to specific complaints by American companies. Initiat

    December 14, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • Despite Tillerson overture, White House says not right time for North Korea talks

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- No negotiations can be held with North Korea until it improves its behavior, a White House official said on Wednesday, raising questions about U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's offer to begin talks with Pyongyang any ti

    December 14, 2017 09:17 am JST
  • Japan rattled by 83 North Korean 'ghost ship' arrivals

    TOKYO -- With a record number of wooden boats drifting into coastal areas, the Japanese government is bolstering patrols and other measures to better respond to what are believed to be illegal fishing vessels from North Korea.A total of 83 such vess

    December 14, 2017 05:26 am JST