- Germany’s Chancellor Merkel has declared herself against a military solution to the North Korea issue.
- She has argued the solution is ‘enduring work’ at the UN Security Council.
- Trump has dismissed her stance as being as not pertaining to the US.
- He has threatened North Korean leader Kim will understand the ‘gravity’ of what Trump has meant with his previous warnings.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has spoken out against a potential “military solution” to the tensions surrounding North Korea and its nuclear and ballistic missile programs – but US President Donald Trump has snubbed her call.
Not unlike Merkel, China’s Foreign Ministry has called upon both the United States and North Korea to refrain from spiking tensions on the Korean Peninsula amid the fiery rhetoric now coming from both sides, with US President Donald Trump’s increasing participation.
On Thursday, US President Donald Trump vowed an even tougher stance against the regime of North Korea, saying that his “fire and fury” comment made earlier this week was probably not tough enough.
Before that, however, North Korea’s military announced it was working on a plan to “contain” the US air, naval, and missile bases on the Pacific island of Guam by firing four intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBMs) to “envelop” it.
US National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster recently declared the United Stated was prepared to wage a “preventive war” against North Korea if that was to be deemed necessary – although the current deployment of the US aircraft carriers does not seem to bode a military operation.
North Korea’s military has reacted angrily by stating its preparedness to “contain” the US bases on the Pacific island of Guam with missile strikes.
On Wednesday, US Defense Secretary James Mattis just warned the regime of Kim Jong-un not to invite its own destruction, while earlier this week US President Donald Trump threatened that the North Korean regime will face “fire and fury” if it kept posing as a menace to America.
At the end of July, North Korea test-fired an improved intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), a Hwasong-14, that could strike the US mainland, purportedly, as far east as Chicago.
That was the second missile alleged to be an ICBM to be tested by the regime of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, after on July 4, it carried out a ballistic missile test, and claimed that the rocket was the much coveted intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
‘Need for Enduring Work’
German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday condemned the war of words between North Korea and the United States, Deutsche Welle reported.
While slamming the escalating rhetoric in Pyongyang and Washington, Merkel told reporters in Berlin that Germany’s government believed the conflict with North Korean weapon programs could not be solved by military means.
“Germany will very intensively take part in the options for resolution that are not military but I consider a verbal escalation to be the wrong response,” she said.
“I don’t see a military solution to this conflict,” the German Chancellor insisted.
“I see the need for enduring work at the UN Security Council… as well as tight cooperation between the countries involved, especially the US and China,” she elaborated.
Her remarks echoed a statement released by her office quoting spokesman Steffen Seibert. The statement, however, also said the responsibility for the escalation lay with Pyongyang.
“Without the nuclear armament of North Korea the current situation would not have come to this,” Seibert said.
In line with Merkel’s view on how to reduce the tensions building up on the Korean Peninsula, the High Representative for Foreign Policy of the European Union, Federica Mogherini, said she had called EU member states to an extraordinary meeting next week to discuss the Union’s course of action on the issue.
“Mogherini has decided to convene an extraordinary meeting of the Political and Security Committee on [Monday, August 14] to discuss possible next steps on the situation in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea,” her office said in a statement.
‘Very Good Friend’
Later on Friday, however, US President Donald Trump brushed aside German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s criticism of the growing tension between the United States and North Korea, saying she did not speak for his country.
“Let her speak for Germany,” Trump told reporters in New Jersey when asked about her comments.
“She’s a very good friend of mine. Maybe she’s referring to Germany, she’s certainly not referring to the United States,” he added.
He then beefed up a warning he had earlier posted on Twitter, which said “military solutions” were “fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely. Hopefully Kim Jong-un will find another path.”
“I hope that they are fully going to understand the gravity of what I said and what I said is what I mean,” Trump reiterated at his New Jersey golf resort, where he was holidaying.
If Kim attacked Guam, Trump warned, “he will truly regret it and he will regret it fast.”
Trump also said he would speak to Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday and that the US was considering additional economic sanctions against North Korea.