MOSCOW (Sputnik) – South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Thursday that he is convinced that the United States would refrain from any military actions on the Korean Peninsula without South Korea's consent, and even if Washington makes a decision to take military actions outside the peninsula, it would still consult with Seoul.
"I am saying any military action to be taken on the Korean Peninsula requires South Korea's consent unless it is taken outside the peninsula. Also, even if the United States takes military action outside the peninsula, I am confident it will sufficiently consult with South Korea in advance if such action may increase tension between the South and the North," Moon told a press conference to mark 100 days in office, as quoted by the Yonhap news agency.
"Basically, the Republic of Korea is the one directly and mostly affected by North Korea's nuclear and missile issues. But it is also an issue between the North and the United States. Therefore, should North Korea continue to take provocative actions, or even take an aggressive action against the United States, the U.S. may take appropriate steps… The United States and President Donald Trump too have agreed to discuss any options it may take [against North Korea] with South Korea regardless of what kind of options it takes," the president said.
The tensions surrounding North Korea have escalated further in past few days, as Pyongyang vowed to use any means possible to retaliate against the United States after the approval of US-drafted sanctions UN sanctions against the country on August 5. Trump, in turn, warned that North Korea's threats against the United States would be met with "fire and fury." Following the statement, Pyongyang said it considered an attack near the Pacific island of Guam, where several US military bases are located. But on Tuesday North Korea’s state media reported that its leader Kim Jong Un had decided to wait and see what the United States did next. On Wednesday, Trump said Kim's move was wise and well-reasoned.