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(LEAD) Trump warns of 'pretty severe things' against N. Korea

All News 05:27 July 07, 2017

(ATTN: UPDATES with Mattis remarks)

WASHINGTON, July 6 (Yonhap) -- U.S. President Donald Trump said Thursday he's thinking about "some pretty severe things" to do against North Korea after the communist nation test-fired an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of striking the U.S.

Trump made the remark in Poland after talks with Polish President Andrzej Duda. He didn't specify what those severe things are, but military options could be among them.

Hours earlier, Trump's U.N. envoy, Amb. Nikki Haley, said during a U.N. Security Council meeting that the U.S. is prepared to use its "considerable military force" if necessary, warning that Pyongyang's actions, including the ICBM test, are closing off chances of a diplomatic solution.

"I have some pretty severe things that we're thinking about. That doesn't mean we're going to do them. I don't draw red lines," Trump said. He said the North is "behaving in a very, very dangerous manner and something will have to be done about it."

"Not only must we secure our nations from the threat of terrorism, but we must also confront the threat from North Korea. That's what it is. It's a threat and we will confront it very strongly," Trump said. "President Duda and I call on all nations to confront this global threat and publicly demonstrate to North Korea that there are consequences for their very, very bad behavior."

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said the U.S. and the North aren't closer to war because of the test.

"I do not believe this capability in itself brings us closer to war because the president has been very clear, and the secretary of state has been very clear, that we are leading with diplomatic and economic efforts," Mattis told reporters.

He also said that a diplomatic solution is always better than war.

"As (Winston) Churchill put it, better to jaw-jaw than war-war. We (are) right now dealing with this very serious escalation, this provocation, this affront to the United Nations Security Council resolutions," he said. "We remain in a diplomatic effort engaging allies and partner nations across the board.

China and Russia have voiced strong opposition to any consideration of military force.

During Wednesday's Security Council meeting, Russia's deputy U.N. ambassador, Vladimir Safronkov, said that the possibility of taking military measures must be excluded. China's U.N. ambassador, Liu Jieyi, also said military means must not be an option.

U.S. President Donald Trump holds a joint news conference with Poland's President Andrzej Duda in Warsaw on July 6. (EPA-Yonhap)


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