07:53 GMT21 February 2020
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    The US vice president explained that the strikes in Syria and Afghanistan were a message to Pynogyang.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Recent military strikes on enemy forces in Afghanistan and Syria illustrate the shift in US strategy to halt North Korea’s continuing tests of atomic weapons and ballistic missiles to deliver those weapons, Vice President Mike Pence said in a joint press conference with South Korea’s acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn on Monday.

    "Just in the past two weeks, the world witnessed the strength and resolve of our new President [Donald Trump] in actions taken in Syria and Afghanistan," Pence stated. "North Korea would do well not to test his resolve — or the strength of the armed forces of the United States in this region."

    Earlier this month, the United Stated dropped for the first time its most powerful non-nuclear weapon on an al-Qaeda tunnel complex in Afghanistan, the Massive Ordnance Air Blast Bomb (MOAB), the biggest non-nuclear bomb in its arsenal.

    Both the United States and South Korea pledged to complete deployment of the Theater High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile system, the vice president explained.

    Pence also delivered a double-edge message to China, mentioning Beijing’s imposition of sanctions against South Korea over the THAAD deployment while also saying that the United States has "great confidence that China will properly deal with North Korea."

    Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed to cooperate on North Korea during a recent summit with President Donald Trump held in the Mar-a-Lago estate in the US state in Florida.

    But Pence also repeated earlier warnings that the United States and its allies are prepared to deal with North Korea with or without China’s help.


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    Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), Mike Pence, Democratic Republic of North Korea (DPRK), Afghanistan, Syria, United States
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