Published: Fri, November 16, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

North Korea state media says Kim inspects testing of ‘tactical’ weapon: Yonhap

North Korea state media says Kim inspects testing of ‘tactical’ weapon: Yonhap

His remarks come as Trump dismissed as "fake news" a report by the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies that it had found 13 undeclared North Korean missile bases.

It's the first publicly known field inspection of a weapons test by Kim Jong Un since he observed the testing of the Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile in November of previous year, according to South Korea's Unification Ministry.

The remark, made during a meeting with Moon in Singapore on the sidelines of regional summits, is seen as a call for Moon to play greater roles so that upcoming talks between the US and the North, including a second summit, will be able make progress.

Pence, standing in for President Donald Trump at the 10-nation summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Singapore and another later in the week in Papua New Guinea, told his fellow leaders that "empire and aggression have no place" in the region.

His comments came after a meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on the sidelines of a summit attended by world leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.

Diplomacy has stalled since the June summit between Trump and Kim in Singapore, with Washington pushing for more action on nuclear disarmament and the North insisting the United States first approve a peace declaration formally ending the 1950-53 Korean War.

"This result today is a justification of the party's policy focused on defence science and technology, another display of our rapidly-growing defence capabilities to the whole region, and a groundbreaking change in strengthening our military's combat capabilities", Mr Kim said.

Pence also said that Trump will push for a concrete plan outlining Pyongyang's moves to end its arms programmes.

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Associated Press reports that Pence told a summit of Southeast Asian leaders Thursday in Singapore that Washington sought "an Indo-Pacific in which all nations, large and small, can prosper and thrive - secure in our sovereignty, confident in our values, and growing stronger together".

United States officials insist on the complete, verified and irreversible denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula before sanctions are lifted.

Cho believed that North Korea's young leader Kim Jong Un was more reform-minded than earlier members of the ruling dynasty, who favoured self-reliance.

Pence also thanked Moon for supporting the revision of a free trade pact between the two countries.

Pence acknowledged that India had made substantial progress economically as well as diplomatically in regional and worldwide affairs, Gokhale said.

"I have no doubt that (US Vice-President Mike Pence) conveys his President's intent and has conveyed accurately what his president...wanted him to register (at the summit)", said Lee.

He said President Trump is "hopeful" the meeting will "lay the groundwork for achieving our long-term objective of denuclearization".

The 34-minute meeting was Moon's first with Pence since the US vice president visited South Korea in February to attend the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.

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