N Korea's 'twisted dictatorship' cannot hold world hostage to 'nuclear blackmail': Trump
WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump has vowed not to allow the "twisted dictatorship" in North Korea to hold the world hostage to "nuclear blackmail" as he pledged a global campaign of "maximum pressure" to de-nuclearise Pyongyang.
Tensions have dramatically risen on the Korean peninsula after North Korea in September conducted its biggest nuclear test, which its state-run KCNA news agency described it as a hydrogen bomb.
In a televised address to the nation after his 12-day maiden trip to Asia, Trump said North Korea was on the top of his priority list.
During his trip to China, Trump said Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged to faithfully implement UN Security Council resolutions on North Korea and to use his great economic influence over the regime to achieve their common goal of a denuclearised Korean Peninsula.
"President Xi recognises that a nuclear North Korea is a grave threat to China," he said.
"We agreed that we would not accept a so-called 'freeze for freeze' agreement like those that have consistently failed in the past. We made that time is running out and we made it clear, and all options remain on the table,"
The US president said during his address at the national assembly of South Korea, he "made clear that we will not allow this twisted dictatorship (in North Korea) to hold the world hostage to nuclear blackmail."
Trump and North Korean supreme leader Kim Jong-Un have traded increasingly threatening and personal insults as Pyongyang races towards its goal of developing a nuclear- tipped missile capable of reaching the US.
"I called on every nation, including China and Russia, to unite in isolating the North Korean regime — cutting off all ties of trade and commerce — until it stops its dangerous provocation on— and this is the whole key to what we're doing — on denuclearisation. We have to denuclearise North Korea," Trump said.
The US welcomed the decision of President Moon Jae-in to remove the payload restrictions on missiles to combat the North Korean threat.