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U.S. House speaker says U.S. shouldn't let Asian alliances to 'atrophy'

All News 06:50 June 10, 2016

WASHINGTON, June 9 (Yonhap) -- U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan said Thursday that the U.S. should not allow U.S. alliances in Asia to "atrophy" and the top U.S. foreign policy priority in the region should be to counter the threat of North Korea.

"In East Asia, our allies are desperate for a greater American role. Our top priority must be to counter the threat of a nuclear North Korea. And we must respond strategically to expansionist China's rise, including checking its territorial ambitions," Ryan said in a foreign policy report, titled "A Better Way: Our vision for a confident America."

"These challenges create opportunities to bring together Japan and South Korea while strengthening our ties with Taiwan and the Philippines. We cannot allow our alliances in East Asia and the Pacific to atrophy and must shore up our defense arrangements to deter China from tilting the global balance of power toward autocracy," the report said.

The report, which is expected to be adopted as the Republican Party's foreign policy platform, contrasts with the policy of the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. The real-estate tycoon has expressed deeply negative views of allies and U.S. security commitments overseas.

It remains to be seen how Trump will reconcile his views with those of the party.

Ryan also strongly blasted President Barack Obama's foreign policy.

"After eight years of broken promises, concessions, and retreat by the Obama administration, America's adversaries sense weakness and are pressing their advantage around the globe," he said, accusing Obama of refusing to enforce its red line in Syria, legitimizing Iran's nuclear enrichment program, and tolerating a more bellicose North Korean regime.

"The 'strategic patience' that the administration showed North Korea has emboldened the country's rogue regime to test nuclear weapons and new missile systems that can reach our territory," he said.


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