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Latest update : 2017-10-23

Seoul: 'Time running out to prevent a nuclear N. Korea'

In an interview with FRANCE 24, South Korea's Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha discussed the nuclear crisis with neighbouring North Korea. She stressed that "there must not be another war on the Korean peninsula". The top diplomat warned that time was "running out" to stop North Korea becoming a nuclear power, but insisted that there was "still time" to avert this scenario.

South Korea's foreign minister also told FRANCE 24 that US President Donald Trump’s bellicose remarks on North Korea are "an indication of his strong desire to find a solution" to the crisis. She added that the recent military exercises in the peninsula are designed to "pressure" Pyongyang to return to the negotiating table.

However, Kang Kyung-wha rejected the proposal broached by Donald Trump and the main South Korean opposition party to bring back tactical US nuclear weapons, which were withdrawn in 1991, calling it "not the best option".

Asked what North Korean leader Kim Jong-un may be thinking, South Korea's top diplomat described the regime in Pyongyang as "very insecure". She explained that the nuclear and missile programmes are its way of trying to gain "leverage", in order to be "in a position of strength when, ultimately, the time comes to sit at the table".

The South Korean foreign minister warned that "time is running out" to prevent North Korea becoming a nuclear power, but insisted that there was "still time".

Finally, she stressed that her government does not seek "regime collapse" in North Korea and held out the offer of better relations with its neighbour. "Should North Korea change course, there is an opportunity for dialogue," she said.

By Marc PERELMAN

Archives

2018-08-13 Marine BENOIT

Paleontologist Kenneth Lacovara: ‘Dinosaurs were the last great champions’

Our guest in this edition is Kenneth Lacovara, a paleontologist who has studied some the largest dinosaurs ever to walk our planet. Lacovara explains why more than ever, these...

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2018-08-13 Marjorie PAILLON

Alan Turing's nephew: ‘A Shakespearean tragedy surrounded his life’

His uncle cracked Nazi ciphering by finding the settings for the Enigma coding machine in 1939, giving the United Kingdom and its allies an enormous advantage during World War...

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2018-07-30 Marjorie PAILLON

Space is not a 'Plan B', says former NASA astronaut

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2018-07-28 Alvaro SIERRA

France Foreign Minister Le Drian urges Colombia to stick to peace process

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2018-07-26 James ANDRE

War in Syria: Has Assad won?

Fadi Dayoub is a Syrian activist and the head of an NGO which focuses on local development and small projects in areas in Syria beyond the control of the Assad regime. He tells...

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