The Latest: Trump says China putting pressure on North Korea
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The Latest on North Korea test-firing a missile (all times local):
8:38 a.m. Sunday
President Donald Trump says he believes China’s president has been putting pressure on North Korea as it pursues its missile and nuclear weapons programs.
In an interview with CBS’ “Face the Nation,” Trump says he won’t be happy if North Korea conducts a nuclear test and that he believes Chinese President Xi Jinping won’t be happy, either.
Asked if that means military action, Trump responded: “I don’t know. I mean, we’ll see.”
The interview is set to air later Sunday in the U.S.
5:35 a.m. Sunday
Pope Francis is warning that “a good part of humanity” will be destroyed if tensions with North Korea escalate, and he is calling for diplomacy and a revived United Nations to take the lead in negotiating a resolution.
Francis was asked as he traveled back to Rome from Egypt on Saturday local time (Sunday morning Seoul time) about North Korean ballistic missile tests and U.S. warnings of “catastrophic” consequences if the world fails to stop them. He was asked specifically what he would tell U.S. President Donald Trump, who has sent a U.S. carrier to conduct drills near the Koreas, and other leaders to try to diffuse the tensions.
Francis says he would urge them to use diplomacy and negotiation “because it’s the future of humanity.”
“Today, a wider war will destroy not a small part of humanity, but a good part of humanity and culture. Everything. Everything, no? It would be terrible. I don’t think humanity today could bear it,” he told reporters.
6:45 p.m. Saturday
South Korea’s navy says it has started joint exercises with U.S. ships, including the supercarrier USS Carl Vinson, which the United States dispatched to the region in a show of force amid the growing threat posed by North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs.
The drills began Saturday hours after South Korean and U.S. officials said they detected what they presumed was a failed missile launch from an area near the North Korean capital, Pyongyang.
The South Korean navy says the drill is aimed at “deterring North Korea’s provocations and displaying the firm alliance between the United States and South Korea.”
The USS Carl Vinson also participated in annual springtime drills between United States and South Korea in March.
Norwegian Foreign Minister Borge Brende said Saturday on Twitter that “new missile test violates SC (Security Council) resolution. Urgent need for common action to reduce tension.”
Norway, which is not a current member of the Security Council, is a founding member of the United Nations and has always considered the body as a cornerstone in its foreign policy.
One of Tokyo’s major subways systems says it shut down all lines for 10 minutes early Saturday after receiving warning of a North Korean missile launch.
Tokyo Metro official Hiroshi Takizawa says the temporary suspension affected 13,000 passengers.
Service was halted on all nine lines at 6:07 a.m. It resumed at 6:17 a.m. after it was clear there was no threat to Japan.
Takizawa says it was the first time service had been stopped in response to a missile launch. Train service is generally suspended in Japan immediately after large earthquakes. Tokyo Metro decided earlier this month to stop for missile launch warnings as well.
North Korea’s state media has reiterated the country’s goal of developing a nuclear missile capable of reaching the continental United States on the same day rivals Washington and Seoul detected a failed missile launch from an area near Pyongyang.
The Rodong Sinmun newspaper also said Saturday that the North revealed two types of new intercontinental ballistic missiles in an April 15 military parade honoring its late state founder, Kim Il Sung, the grandfather of current ruler Kim Jong Un. The parade featured previously unseen large rocket canisters and launcher trucks.
It said: “The large territory that is the United States has been entirely exposed to our pre-emptive nuclear strike means.”
Referring to the United States sending the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier to Korean waters, the newspaper said that “rendering aircraft carriers useless is not even a problem” for its military.
The newspaper says that the North displayed three types of ICBMs during the parade, including two new types that were inside the canisters.
Analysts say the North’s existing liquid-fuel ICBMS, including the KN-08 and KN-14, are potentially capable of reaching the U.S. mainland, although the North has never flight tested them.
Japan’s government spokesman says the missile launched by North Korea is believed to have traveled about 50 kilometers (30 miles) and fallen on an inland part of the country.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga (yoh-shee-hee-deh soo-gah) said the ballistic missile was fired to the northeast around 5:30 a.m. from an area in the vicinity of Pukchang, north of Pyongyang, the capital.
He spoke at a news conference following a meeting of Japan’s National Security Council.
France’s U.N. ambassador says the U.N. Security Council is “mobilized” and unanimous on the need to denuclearize North Korea.
Francois Delattre said at the United Nations after North Korea’s apparently failed missile launch Saturday that while there were “nuances” on policy to be worked out among council members, there is unanimity on the need for North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons.
North Korea fired the missile hours after the Security Council held a ministerial meeting on Pyongyang’s escalating weapons program. North Korean officials boycotted the meeting, which was chaired by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
Delattre says the council must be “very firm” implementing sanctions, adopting new ones if necessary and denouncing North Korea’s human rights record.
South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff says a North Korean missile flew for several minutes and reached a maximum height of 71 kilometers (44 miles) before it apparently failed Saturday.
The joint chiefs said in a statement on Saturday that the missile was fired 49 degrees northeast from an area near Pukchang, just north of the capital Pyongyang. It didn’t immediately provide an estimate on how far the missile flew.
South Korea says it’s still analyzing what type of missile the North fired.
A U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive matters, said the missile was likely a medium-range KN-17 ballistic missile and that it broke up a couple of minutes after launch.
President Donald Trump says North Korea “disrespected” China with its most recent ballistic missile test.
South Korea’s military said in a statement Friday afternoon that North Korea had fired the missile from an area near the capital of Pyongyang, but provided no other details.
U.S. and South Korean officials say the launch apparently failed.
Trump did not answer reporters’ questions about the missile launch upon returning to the White House from a daytrip to Atlanta.
But he commented on Twitter, saying, “North Korea disrespected the wishes of China & its highly respected President when it launched, though unsuccessfully, a missile today. Bad!”
Japan has protested the latest missile launch by North Korea.
Japanese government spokesman Yoshihide Suga (yoh-shee-hee-deh soo-gah) said Saturday that a ballistic missile firing would be “a clear violation of U.N. security council resolutions.”
He added that Japan “cannot accept repeated provocation by North Korea” and had “lodged a strong protest against North Korea.”
Japan has become increasingly concerned in recent weeks about the possibility of a North Korean missile attack targeting Japan or U.S. forces stationed in Japan.
Japan’s public broadcaster NHK has aired footage of a U.S. aircraft carrier sailing off the coast of Nagasaki prefecture in southern Japan.
The USS Carl Vinson is heading north toward the Korean peninsula in a show of force after satellite images suggested North Korea may be preparing to conduct a nuclear test.
NHK said it shot the footage Saturday morning from a helicopter.
Nagasaki is in Kyushu, the southernmost of Japan’s four main islands.
The Vinson conducted joint training Friday with two Japanese destroyers and two Japanese F-15 fighter jets in waters further south off the Japanese island of Okinawa.
The White House says President Donald Trump has been briefed on North Korea’s most recent ballistic missile test.
South Korea’s military said in a statement Friday afternoon that North Korea had fired the missile from an area around the capital of Pyongyang, but provided no other details. U.S. and South Korean officials say the launch apparently failed.
Trump returned to the White House from a trip to Atlanta shortly after the news broke. He did not answer reporters’ questions about the missile launch.
Trump has threatened military action if North Korea continues its pursuit of a nuclear weapons program. He has also said he would prefer to resolve the issue through diplomacy.
A U.S. official says North Korea has tested what was likely a medium-range ballistic missile.
The official says the missile broke up a couple minutes after the launch and the pieces fell into the Sea of Japan.
The official was citing an American assessment and says it appeared to be a medium-range KN-17 ballistic missile.
The official wasn’t authorized to speak publicly on the matter and demanded anonymity.
—Lolita C. Baldor in Washington
South Korea’s foreign minister is warning that if the international community doesn’t respond to North Korea’s repeated provocations now, “we will only further feed the appetite of the trigger-happy regime in Pyongyang.”
Yun Byung-se told a ministerial meeting of the U.N. Security Council on Friday that it should take additional punitive measures before North Korea launches more ballistic missiles or conducts a new nuclear test — not afterward.
He proposed “potent measures” including halting the export and supply of crude oil to North Korea, completely cutting off its hard currency earnings by suspending all coal imports from the country, downgrading diplomatic relations, “and seriously considering whether North Korea, a serial offender, is qualified as a member of the U.N.”
Yun said South Korea’s goal “is not to bring North Korea to its knees but to bring it back to the negotiating table for genuine