Pence says working with allies to put pressure on North Korea

In comments reported by the national broadcaster NHK on Thursday, Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso said he believed the TPP trade talks would offer greater advantages to Japan than bilateral negotiations with the U.S. "The U.S. government has not yet made an official request to discuss the Korea-U.S. [Korus] FTA".

Pence also said that North Korea's latest failed missile launch was a reckless act of provocation, and assured Asian allies that the Washington is ready to work to achieve a peaceful denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. Days later, in response to a question about the warships, Trump told the Fox Business Network that the USA was "sending an armada, very powerful" to North Korea.

"You could either go after the supply chain, embedding flaws in parts and systems that they are using", said Peter Singer, fellow at New America and author of the book "Cybersecurity and Cyberwar: What Everyone Needs to Know".

Asked what North Korea must do, he repeated that "all options are on the table, and there they will remain".

Also Tuesday, it emerged that a USA strike group was not near the Korean Peninsula as had been previously thought, after President Trump said last week he had sent an "armada" as a warning to Pyongyang.

The vice president is on the second stop of a 10-day visit to the Asia-Pacific region after visiting South Korea, where he toured the demilitarized zone (DMZ), the heavily fortified border between North and South Korea. Join us in a conversation about world events, the newsgathering process or whatever aspect of the news universe you find interesting or important.

As leader of the world's most populous Muslim nation, Indonesian President Joko Widodo has voiced worries about Trump's immigration policy, which critics say is biased against Muslims.

"The shield stands guard and the sword stands ready", he said.

Japan and the USA seem to have different ideas on how to take their trading relationship forward.

The Trump administration has said that it is reviewing all options on North Korea, including those involving military action, but Defense Secretary James Mattis is also underscoring the need for a non-military solution.

Sakakibara said he explained to Pence how Japanese corporate activities have contributed to the U.S. economy. Pence is now on a 10-day trip in A.

US Vice President Mike Pence doubled down on the US commitment to Asia Pacific with a stern warning for North Korea, which he called the "most unsafe and urgent threat" to the region.

But Pence struck a starkly different tone during his visit to Indonesia, which has often been praised as a successful Muslim democracy where most practise a moderate form of Islam and coexist peacefully with substantial religious minorities.

Adam Mulawarman, the Indonesian foreign ministry's director of American affairs, said he believed "the visit to Istiqlal reflects the desire of the United States to open itself to Islam, to engage in interfaith dialogue".

"But at the same time", the prime minister said, "dialogue for the sake of dialogue is valueless and it is necessary for us to exercise pressure on North Korea so that it comes forward and engages in this serious dialogue".

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