UN주재 美 대사 "北核실험 감행할 경우 '군사적 타격' 배제하지 않아"|
트럼프 대통령 “사람들이 지난 수십년간 북핵 문제에 눈감아왔는데 이제는 문제를 해결해야”
니키 헤일리 유엔 주재 미국대사는 24일(현지시간) 북한이 6차 핵실험 등의 도발을 감행할 경우 미국은 북한에 대한 군사적 타격을 배제하지 않겠다는 입장을 표명했다.
헤일리 대사는 이날 NBC 등 美 방송과의 인터뷰에서 “그가 우리에게 무엇인가를 하도록 이유를 제공하지 않는다면 우리도 무언가를 하지 않겠다”면서 “미국 기지를 공격하거나 대륙간탄도미사일, ICBM 시험 발사 등을 감행한다면 미국도 확실한 행동에 나설 것”이라고 밝혔다.
북한이 추가로 핵 또는 미사일 실험을 하면 어떻게 되느냐는 질문이 나오자 헤일리 대사는 “그렇다면 트럼프 대통령이 개입해 어떻게 할지 결정을 내릴 것”이라고 말했다.
헤일리 대사는 이와 함께 미국이 먼저 무력을 행사하지는 않을 뜻임을 분명히 밝히면서 “그동안 ‘미국은 싸움을 하려는 게 아니다’라고 말해왔지 않느냐”면서 “북한이 미국에 싸울 이유를 주지 말아야 한다”고 말했다.
헤일리 대사는 중국이 북한에 압력을 행사하는 것에 대해 “환영한다. 대북 압박을 앞으로도 계속 보게 될 것”이라고 덧붙였다.
한편, 도널드 트럼프 대통령 또한 이날 안보리 회원국 대사들을 백악관으로 초청해 오찬을 함께 하는 자리에서 “사람들이 지난 수십년간 (북핵 문제에) 눈감아왔는데 이제는 문제를 해결해야 하는 문제”라고 말했다.
[관련기사] Nikki Haley isn’t ruling out a US strike against North Korea
By Yaron Steinbuch
April 24, 2017 | 2:26pm | Updated
UN Ambassador Nikki Haley isn’t ruling out a US strike against North Korea if it tests a sixth nuclear device — while President Trump says the UN Security Council must be prepared to impose new sanctions on the hermit kingdom.
“We are not going to do anything unless he gives us reason to do something,” Haley said on NBC’s “Today,” referring to saber-rattling despot Kim Jong Un.
“If you see him attack a military base, if you see some sort of intercontinental ballistic missile, then obviously we’re going to do that,” she said. “But right now, we’re saying, ‘Don’t test, don’t use nuclear missiles, don’t try and do any more actions,’ and I think he’s understanding that.”
She also praised China’s involvement in trying to pressure Pyongyang to cease missile testing.
The White House said in a statement Monday that Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping reaffirmed the “urgency of the threat posed by North Korea.”
Trump has repeatedly promised that China will earn a better trade deal with the US if it helps to apply pressure on its longtime ally.
When asked what would happen if North Korea tests another missile or nuclear device, Haley told NBC: “I think then the president steps in and decides what’s going to happen.”
North Korea has been aggressively pursuing a decades-long goal of putting a nuclear warhead on an intercontinental ballistic missile, or ICBM, capable of reaching the US mainland.
South Korean officials say there’s a chance the country will conduct its sixth nuke test or its maiden test launch of an ICBM around the 85th anniversary of its military on Tuesday.
“What we’re dealing with is a leader who is flailing right now and he’s trying to show his citizens he has muscle,” Haley told “CBS This Morning.”
Meanwhile, Trump said the UN Security Council must be prepared to impose new sanctions on North Korea amid the rising tensions over its missile and nuclear programs.
Trump added that the council failed to act in response to a recent Syrian chemical weapons attack — which he called a “great disappointment,” Reuters reported.
“The status quo in North Korea is also unacceptable and the council must be prepared to impose additional and stronger sanctions on North Korean nuclear and ballistic missile programs,” Trump told ambassadors at the White House from countries on the council.
“This is a real threat to the world, whether we want to talk about it or not. North Korea is a big world problem and it’s a problem that we have to finally solve,” he said. “People put blindfolds on for decades and now it’s time to solve the problem.”
The president earlier spoke with the Chinese president, who called for restraint when dealing with North Korea.
Xi said his country “strongly opposes” actions that violate Security Council resolutions and he hoped “the parties concerned will exercise restraint and avoid actions that aggravate tensions on the peninsula,” USA Today reported, citing the official Xinhua news agency.
“Xi noted that if the parties shoulder their due responsibilities and meet each other halfway, they can solve the nuclear issue of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and denuclearize the Korean peninsula,” Xinhua added.
The Trump administration has warned that all options — including a military strike — are “on the table” to block North Korea’s ambitions of developing a nuclear-tipped missile that could reach the US mainland.
The phone call was the leaders’ second conversation since their Mar-a-Lago meeting April 6.
Trump also spoke with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe about maintaining close contact as Japan’s Self-Defense Force held joint exercises with the USS Carl Vinson off the Korean peninsula, NBC News reported.
“We completely agreed to strongly demand that North Korea, who’s been repeatedly dangerous and provocative, show restraint,” Abe told reporters Monday. “We’ll maintain close contact with US and high level of monitoring and surveillance as we respond firmly on North Korea.”
Two Japanese destroyers have joined the carrier group for drills, and South Korea said Monday it also was in talks about holding joint naval exercises.
The deployment of the Carl Vinson has riled Pyongyang, which said it was “an extremely dangerous act by those who plan a nuclear war to invade the North.”
“The United States should not run amok and should consider carefully any catastrophic consequence from its foolish military provocative act,” Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of the North’s ruling Workers’ Party, said in a commentary Monday, NBC News reported.
Vice President Mike Pence last week said “the era of strategic patience is over” regarding US policy toward North Korea, as it continues its missile program and nuclear weapons tests.
Trump has told Xi that China could get better trade terms from Washington if it helps rein in nuclear threats from its longtime ally.
Meanwhile, North Korea detained a third US citizen in Pyongyang on Saturday.
Pyongyang University of Science and Technology identified him as Kim Sang Duk, also known as Tony Kim, USA Today reported.
The college said he taught at PUST for several weeks before he was arrested as he was about to leave the country.
“We understand that this detention is related to an investigation into matters that are not connected in any way with the work of PUST,” the college said in a statement.
“We cannot comment on anything that Mr. Kim may be alleged to have done that is not related to his teaching work and not on the PUST campus. Life on campus and the teaching at PUST is continuing as normal for the Spring semester.”
He is believed to be the third American detained by North Korea.