France is warning that North Korea may be only a “few months” away from having a long-range nuclear missile capable of reaching Europe or the mainland United States.
While the American media obsesses over the caps and shoes worn by the First Couple, they have ignored the most explosive international crisis facing the world today – an aggressive Kim Jong Un and a North Korean regime on the verge of going nuclear.
Some in the American media have scoffed at President Trump’s rhetoric towards North Korea as misplaced warmongering, but this new stark warning from France should be a wake-up call for those not taking the threat seriously.
French foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian himself issued the warning this week in an interview with RTL Radio, saying North Korea has “set itself an objective” to create a nuclear arsenal capable of reaching the United States and its allies. He insists the “situation is extremely serious.”
The situation became even more dire after Kim Jong Un fired a missile over Japanese airspace. ‘The situation is extremely serious,” Le Drian said in the interview. “We see North Korea setting itself as an objective to have tomorrow or the day after missiles that can transport nuclear weapons. In a few months that will be a reality. At that moment, when North Korea has the means to strike the United States, even Europe, but definitely Japan and China, then the situation will be explosive.”
Le Drian, who spoke to his Chinese counterpart on Thursday, said everything had to be done to ensure a latest round of United Nations sanctions was implemented and urged China, Pyongyang’s main trade partner, to do its utmost to enforce them.
‘North Korea must find the path to negotiations. It must be diplomatically active.’
It comes as Russian President Vladimir Putin warned of a ‘major conflict’ looming on the Korean Peninsula, calling for crisis talks.
Nuclear-armed North Korea on Tuesday fired a ballistic missile over Japan into the Pacific, escalating tensions over its atomic programme which have led to bellicose exchanges between Washington and Pyongyang.
Putin warned that the region was ‘on the brink of a major conflict’.
‘The problems in the region will only be solved via direct dialogue between all concerned parties, without preconditions,’ Putin said in a Kremlin statement, warning that ‘threats, pressure and insulting and militant rhetoric are a dead end.’
On Tuesday, US President Donald Trump warned that ‘all options’ were back on the table after the reclusive state fired an intermediate-range Hwasong-12 missile over Japan, snubbing Washington’s bid to draw it into talks.
Putin called for all sides to sign on to a mediation programme drawn up by Moscow and Beijing.
He echoed comments by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who in a Wednesday telephone call with his US counterpart Rex Tillerson ‘underscored… the need to refrain from any military steps that could have unpredictable consequences.’
The Russia-China plan involves a mutual pause in missile tests by North Korea as well as the joint South Korean-US military exercises by Seoul.