East Asia Summit: 'Unprecedented sense of crisis' over North Korea

MANILA, Philippines – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday, November 14, said world leaders belonging to the East Asia Summit “shared an unprecedented sense of crisis” over North Korea’s continued provocations and recent missile tests.

In a press conference on the sidelines of the 31st Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and Related Summits in Manila, Abe urged the international community to band together in the implementation of sanctions imposed by the United Nations (UN) Security Council on North Korea.

Noting that nations should not have “dialogue for the sake of dialogue” with North Korea, Abe said it’s up to the international community to put the pressure on North Korea. “We have to create a situation in which North Korea comes to us, asking for a dialogue in exchange for changing their policies,” he added.

North Korea and its recent missile nuclear developments have triggered the outrage and condemnation of countries around the world. It was among the many key issues that were discussed during the ASEAN Summit in Manila and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit in Vietnam.

On September 15, North Korea fired a ballistic missile over Japan and into the Pacific, seemingly in response to new sanctions by the United Nations Security Council.

Abe noted that since then, there have been “no acts of provocation” but oral or rhetorical provocations continued. Abe, who had recently met with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and United States President Donald Trump, said they all agreed to “closely watch” the effects of the sanctions, which include limits on trade and a ban on member states from issuing new work permits to North Koreans.

The East Asia Summit is a forum held annually by leaders of 19 countries from East Asia, Southeast Asia, South Asia, as well as the United States, Russia, Australia, and New Zealand. – Rappler.com