21:18 GMT09 August 2020
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    Talking about North Korea’s intention to test-launch an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), State Department spokesman John Kirby said that the United States may impose more sanctions on Pyongyang for its nuclear program.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The United States has not ruled out imposing new punitive measures on North Korea for continuing its missile development program, John Kirby said in a briefing on Tuesday.

    "We haven’t ruled out the possibility of additional sanctions," Kirby stated when asked about North Korea’s vow to test-launch an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

    Earlier on Tuesday, White House spokesperson Josh Earnest said the Obama administration advised the incoming administration of President-elect Donald Trump to work with Russia, China, South Korea and Japan to apply pressure on North Korea to stop its nuclear development activities.

    US Deputy Secretary Antony Blinken and South Korean Deputy National Security Advisor Cho Tae-yong will meet on Friday to discuss a response to North Korea’s nuclear provocations, the US Department of State said in a press release on Tuesday.

    "[Blinken and Cho] will discuss the international community’s response to North Korea’s destabilizing violations of UN Security Council resolutions and review progress in holding North Korea accountable for its unlawful actions," the release stated.

    Earlier on Tuesday, the State Department said Blinken would host Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Shinsuke Sugiyama and South Korea First Vice Foreign Minister Lim Sung-nam in Washington, DC this week for trilateral consultations.

    On Sunday, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un claimed that Pyongyang was finalizing preparations to test an intercontinental ballistic missile.

    On September 5, North Korea launched three ballistic missiles in the direction of the Sea of Japan. Several days later, Pyongyang conducted a successful test of a nuclear warhead, which is believed to be the fifth and largest blast since North Korea began pursuing nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

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