Published: Thu, April 20, 2017
Global | By Doris Richards

Pence to visit mosque in Indonesian capital

Pence to visit mosque in Indonesian capital

Pence also said the United States would protect freedom of navigation and overflight in the South China Sea, where Beijing is entangled in territorial rows with several Southeast Asia nations.

"North Korea is the most risky and urgent threat to peace and security in the Asia-Pacific", the vice president said, standing on the deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan presently stationed at Yokosuka Naval Base in Tokyo Bay, Japan. But Pence said forcefully responding to chemical attacks from President Bashar al-Assad's regime was the correct thing to do. Pence spoke on board the USS Ronald Reagan, docked in Japan.

(English-Reuters 3082) "All options are on the table".

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.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence has once again pledged the Trump administration's commitment to defending its allies in Asia from North Korea and any other threats.

Japan and the US have outlined a path forward for economic talks between the countries. And the United States will continue to deploy more of its advanced military assets to the region in the years ahead, he added.

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He reassured Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday that the US stands behind Japan in the face of a nuclear threat from North Korea. Join us in a conversation about world events, the newsgathering process or whatever aspect of the news universe you find interesting or important.

There, Pence will be meeting Indonesian President Joko Widodo and Vice President Jusuf Kalla, as well as celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the 40th anniversary of USA ties with the group.

"If the U.S.is planning a military attack against us, we will react with a nuclear pre-emptive strike by our own style and method", a North Korean official told the BBC on Monday.

"So the rising Muslim populism aside, I would expect that during this trip, the vice president will focus on the bilateral relationship, on ASEAN, on counter-terrorism, and also doubling down on what could be done to strengthen commercial ties between the two countries", she said.

The United States will not be negotiating directly with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un anytime soon, Vice President Mike Pence told CNN in an exclusive interview. "We believe that through discussions and negotiations among nations apart from North Korea that we may well be able to bring the kind of economic and diplomatic pressure that would result in North Korea finally abandoning its nuclear ambitions and its ballistic missile program".

White House officials say the meetings in Tokyo are meant to forge a framework for future discussions after the USA withdrew from a Pacific Rim trade pact.

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