Monday, April 15, 2013

By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator, Monday, April 15, 2013

Secretary of State John Kerry has called on China to do more to help resolve the North Korean missile crisis, saying the country provided the Pyongyang regime with a “lifeline.”

In an interview with NBC’s TODAY that aired on Monday, Kerry also said any deal with the rogue state would need to be structured so that Pyongyang could not later renege on its terms.

In recent days the North Koreans have readied missiles for launch and some speculated this would happen on Monday, when the nation celebrates the birth of founder Kim Il Sung, current leader Kim Jong Un’s grandfather.

In an interview in Tokyo before flying back to the U.S. on Monday, Kerry said that if the missiles were not fired “that would mean perhaps we’re turning a corner and there’s a possibility of moving in a better direction.”

“Everybody understands the negative side of what happens if there is a shoot. And my hope is that we can move in a different direction here. China, I think, is serious about this,” he said. “They understand the instability this is creating.”

Kerry said it was “very important” for the United States to make clear to North Korea that there would be “consequences for their action” and to reaffirm its security agreements with its allies in the region.

“That done, I think it is very important to the Chinese to focus on the fact that … if they’re not prepared to put the pressure on the North — and they have the greatest ability to have an impact on the North — then this can become more destabilizing,” he said. “And that instability is not in China’s interest, certainly. It’s not in anybody’s interest in the region.”(Source: NBC News)