Biden warns against North Korea tension escalation, prepared for diplomacy

Washington – United States President Joe Biden Thursday warned North Korea not to escalate the situation while saying he is prepared to conduct diplomacy with Pyongyang, reported Xinhua news agency.

In his first formal press conference since taking office, Biden told reporters that North Korea missile tests on Wednesday violated United Natons Security Council Resolution 1718.

“We are consulting with our allies and partners, and there will be responses if they choose to escalate, we will respond accordingly,” he said.

“But I’m also prepared for some form of diplomacy, but it has to be conditioned upon the end result of denuclearisation,” he added.

When asked if North Korea ranked the top foreign policy issue for his administration, Biden replied, “yes.”

Senior US officials said Wednesday that North Korea fired two short-range ballistic missiles off its east coast. The launch followed Pyongyang’s test of two short-range weapons on Sunday, which the Biden administration downplayed as normal military activity.

These tests came after South Korea and the US conducted their annual springtime military exercises from March 8 to 18.

US officials said Tuesday that the Biden administration is in the final stages of its policy review regarding North Korea. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan will discuss the issue with his counterparts in Japan and South Korea next week. – Bernama

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