Trump warns of "severe" response to North Korea's ICBM test

US President Donald Trump – who is in Poland – calls on the global community to ensure "consequences" for North Korea's "very, very bad behaviour" after Pyongyang test-launched an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of delivering nukes.

Photo by: (AFP)
Photo by: (AFP)

Trump was in Warsaw for a meeting of heads of state from central Europe, the Balkans and Baltic states.

US President Donald Trump lashed out on Thursday at North Korea's military sabre-rattling, calling on the global community to ensure there are "consequences" for Pyongyang's belligerence and warning that he is considering a "severe" response.

Trump's remarks came two days after North Korea test launched an intercontinental ballistic missile that it said could carry a nuclear warhead. Some experts believe it could reach the US states of Alaska and Hawaii and perhaps the US Pacific Northwest.

"I call on all nations to confront this global threat and publicly demonstrate to North Korea that there are consequences for their very, very bad behaviour," Trump said during a visit to Poland's capital Warsaw. 

"I have pretty severe things that we're thinking about," Trump said, but added: "That doesn't mean that we'll do them."

Trump was in Warsaw for a meeting of heads of state from central Europe, the Balkans and Baltic states.

En route to a potentially fractious G20 summit in Germany, Trump was due to take part in a gathering of leaders from these areas, an event convened by Poland and Croatia to boost regional trade and infrastructure.

China warns against "words and deeds" 

China on Thursday warned against "words and deeds" that could heighten tensions over North Korea, after Pyongyang tested an intercontinental ballistic missile that Kim Jong-un dubbed a gift to "American bastards."

Tuesday's launch marked a milestone in Pyongyang's decades-long drive for the capability to threaten the US mainland with a nuclear strike, and poses a stark foreign policy challenge for Trump.

"We also call on relevant parties to stay calm, exercise restraint, refrain from words and deeds that may heighten tensions, and jointly make effort for the easing of tensions," foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said. 

Geng, however, defended China's dealings with North Korea, insisting that Beijing has upheld UN sanction resolutions "in a comprehensive and earnest manner."

But, he added, "as a neighbouring country of North Korea, China has maintained normal economic relations and trade."

TRT World spoke to Josh Lowe, European Politics Reporter with Newsweek, about the significance of Trump's visit to Poland.

Taking a dig at NATO countries

Trump, who spoke in a news conference with Polish President Andrzej Duda said that it was "past time" for all countries in the NATO alliance to "get going" on their financial obligations.

Trump reiterated his calls for NATO members to meet their financial obligations.

Speaking just a day before he meets Russian President Vladimir Putin at a G20 summit, Trump said the US was working with its allies to counter "Russia's actions and destabilising behaviour." Duda for his part said he believed Trump took Poland's security seriously.

Trump also conceded that Russia may have interfered in the 2016 election that brought him to power but said other countries may also have been involved.

"I've said it very simply. I think it could very well have been Russia. I think it could well have been other countries. I won't be specific. But I think a lot of people interfere," Trump said. 

TRT World's Matthew Day has more from Warsaw.

CNN took it "too seriously"

Trump, asked about a mock video he tweeted that depicted him tackling and punching a man with the logo of CNN superimposed on his head, said that the news network had taken the issue "too seriously."

He renewed his criticism of CNN and the US media when discussing the video, which critics said encouraged violence against journalists.

Source: 
TRTWorld and agencies