TSS-Nuclear Matters

Nuclear Matters Nuclear news

  • US withdrawal from JCPOA, big political folly: Iran's Rouhani
    on January 21, 2018 at 2:03 pm

    Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says the United States would be making "a very big" political mistake if it pulls out of the 2015 multilateral agreement over Tehran's nuclear program. […]

  • Russia Refuses To Banish Nuclear Weapons and Comply with United Nations Treaty
    on January 20, 2018 at 2:18 pm


  • Pentagon’s proposed nuclear strategy elevates cyberattacks to a terrifying new realm
    on January 20, 2018 at 1:00 pm

    It's the fall of 2019 and America is paralyzed. A wave of cyberattacks have crippled America's banks, sent a blackout rolling across the East Coast, and disabled almost all U.S. internet infrastructure.  America's response is nuclear. A submarine off the coast of North Korea launches ballistic missiles at the tiny, reclusive country, marking the first use of nuclear weapons in battle since 1945. In response, China and Russia prepare for war, and the world watches as an all-out nuclear exchange is suddenly a very real proposition.  This scenario, previously impossible, would be just one of the many that the U.S. government would have to prepare for under the Pentagon's new proposals for how to respond to cyberattacks.  Read more...More about Pentagon, Nuclear Weapons, Nuclear Posture Review, Science, and Cybersecurity […]

  • S. Korea, U.S. agree to stay unified against N.K. nukes
    on January 20, 2018 at 1:12 am

    South Korea and the United States agreed Friday to stay unified and work together to rid North Korea of its nuclear wea […]

  • Collected Department Releases: Joint U.S.-Nordic Workshop on Nuclear Security and Forensics in the Nordic Region
    on January 19, 2018 at 3:10 pm

    Media Note Office of the Spokesperson Washington, DC January 19, 2018 More than 90 nuclear security experts participated in a workshop in Oslo, Norway, from January 17‑19, 2018, to strengthen best practices and promote international cooperation in the field of nuclear forensics. The workshop, organized by the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority (NRPA), the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority (SSM), and the Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority of Finland (STUK), in association with the U.S. Department of State, brought together experts from the region, Europe, United States, International Atomic Energy Agency and Interpol to share best practices and review steps to further strengthen security. They discussed nuclear forensics concepts, techniques, and challenges as well as reviewed a variety of international case studies. The workshop also served to strengthen nuclear security on both the national level and within the broader Nordic region. Nuclear forensics plays a key role, at both the national and international levels, in ensuring the security of nuclear and other radioactive materials. Nuclear forensic techniques and procedures help law enforcement and prosecutors determine the origin and history of nuclear and other radioactive materials. They also help to eliminate nuclear security vulnerabilities, and regional and international cooperation are critical in that respect. Access to nuclear forensics expertise, technology, and best practices helps ensure nations maintain robust and effective nuclear security infrastructures, and that in turn makes the global nuclear security infrastructure stronger and more resilient. Ultimately, effective nuclear security helps prevent radiological and nuclear terrorism. State Secretary Maria Bjerke from the Norwegian Ministry of Health and Care Services, Director Atle Midttun from the Norwegian Ministry for Foreign Affairs, and Chargé d’Affaires Jim DeHart from the U.S. Embassy in Oslo opened the workshop. The Office of Website Management, Bureau of Public Affairs, manages this site as a portal for information from the U.S. State Department.External links to other Internet sites should not be construed as an endorsement of the views or privacy policies contained therein. […]

  • Dialogue and confidence vital to prevent, resolve conflicts, says UN chief
    on January 19, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    Worldwide concerns over nuclear weapons are the highest they have been since the Cold War, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said Thursday, calling for comprehensive political solutions that include dialogue and negotiation to prevent, mitigate and resolve conflicts. […]

  • Trump doubts North Korea nuclear crisis could be resolved 'in a peaceful way'
    on January 19, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    US President Donald Trump has said he is willing to negotiate directly with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un over his country's nuclear weapons program but expressed doubts the crisis could be resolved "in a peaceful way." […]

  • The Moscow Times: Russia refuses to join deal banning nuclear weapons
    on January 19, 2018 at 12:53 pm

    Russia will not join the world’s first nuclear disarmament deal, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said at a UN Security Council meeting on Jan. 18. Read more here. The post The Moscow Times: Russia refuses to join deal banning nuclear weapons appeared first on KyivPost. […]

  • Chinese Oil Ships Found Violating UN Sanctions On North Korea
    on January 19, 2018 at 9:00 am

    At least six Chinese cargo ships violated United Nations sanctions by delivering oil to North Korea in December, according to a new Wall Street Journal report. U.S. intelligence photographs show Chinese-owned or operated ships heading to North Korean ports last month, contradicting claims by Beijing that the nation had stayed true to its commitments under the new sanctions. The violator ships have been identified by name. China had agreed to halt fuel shipments as part of an international effort to pressure Pyongyang to forfeit its nuclear weapons […]

  • Nuclear weapons are a risky defence against cyber attacks
    on January 19, 2018 at 5:38 am

    The world has been living with the threat of a nuclear apocalypse since the 1950s. Over the past decade, intelligence experts have increasingly warned about the threat of a catastrophic cyber attack. Now the two fears appear to have merged, with the US on ... […]

  • Return of tactical nuclear weapons would send a dangerous signal
    on January 19, 2018 at 12:58 am

    President Trump traveled to the Pentagon on Thursday to discuss the National Defense Strategy, an unclassified version of which will be released Friday. Undoubtedly, key topics of discussion on the new strategy included the proliferation of nuclear weapons and missile technology, and the need for the protection of space assets essential to providing early warning in the event of a nuclear attack. […]

  • How Should We Write About Nuclear Weapons?
    on January 18, 2018 at 11:47 pm

    How should one combine the human with the abstract when writing about nuclear weapons? […]

  • Russia not going to join Treaty on Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons — Lavrov
    on January 18, 2018 at 4:41 pm

    The Russian foreign minister noted that the Iran deal failure would be an alarming signal for situation around North Korea […]

  • Tillerson warns of military action against North Korea
    on January 18, 2018 at 2:04 pm

    US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has threatened North Korea with a military response unless it abandons its nuclear weapons program. […]

  • Russia, US spar on Iran, North Korea, Syria
    on January 18, 2018 at 1:27 pm

    (CNN)The UN Security Council meeting was supposed to be about confidence-building in an age of widening nuclear proliferation. However, the session featured once again a big power showdown between Russia and the United States. For fans of political theater ... […]

  • David Cay Johnston: Trump is Determined to Provoke War to Draw Focus from Racist & Erratic Behavior
    on January 18, 2018 at 1:18 pm

    The New York Times reports that the Pentagon is proposing widening the permissible use of nuclear weapons to include responding to cyberattacks and other non-nuclear attacks to U.S. infrastructure. The Pentagon has already outlined this expanded nuclear strategy in a draft document sent to President Trump for approval. It comes amid a series of moves by the Pentagon and President Trump that have escalated the threat of nuclear war. The Wall Street Journal reports the Pentagon is planning to develop two new sea-based nuclear weapons. The New York Times also reports the Pentagon is conducting a series of war games to prepare for a potential war with North Korea. We speak to Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter David Cay Johnston, who has been covering Donald Trump for nearly 30 years. His latest book is just out, titled "It's Even Worse Than You Think: What the Trump Administration Is Doing to America." […]

  • Pyongyang may have 10-20 Nuclear Warheads
    on January 18, 2018 at 8:20 am

    Pyongyang may have 10 to 20 nuclear warheads available. The American nuclear scientist Hans Christensen and his colleague Robert Norris, the director of nuclear information at the federation, said on the pages of the January issue of The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, TASS reports FOCUS. "North Korea may have produced nuclear-capable material in an amount sufficient to create 30 to 60 nuclear warheads, but it has probably gathered between 10 and 20," the experts noted. "Most of them are chargers with a power of 10 to 20 kilotons. Such charges were used during the trials in 2013 and 2016 years. " According to the estimates of the MAGATE, 8 kg of plutonium are sufficient to create a nuclear warhead. "North Korea has made significant progress in implementing the nuclear weapons program, conducting various tests of both nuclear and ballistic missiles," experts wrote. "It is only a matter of time when Pyongyang will have a fully-fledged nuclear arsenal" North Korea has carried out 6 underground tests on nuclear devices. The first - on October 9, 2006. The latest - on September 3, 2017, when the power of the exploded charge, according to the opinion of a number of analysts, may have reached 100 kilotonnes. […]

  • Koreas to March Under One Flag at Olympics Opening Ceremony
    on January 18, 2018 at 8:11 am

    North and South Korea will march jointly under one unified flag during the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics, the biggest sign yet of a detente after months of tensions over Kim Jong Un’s nuclear program, Bloomberg reports.The statement, made on Wednesday following the third round of talks in just over a week, said the two Koreas will form a joint women’s ice hockey team. They will also conduct some activities in North Korea, including a joint cultural event at Mount Geumgang and training for skiers from both countries at the Masikryong ski resort on the east coast.It will be the first time the two Koreas have marched together during the opening ceremony of an international sporting event since 2007, and the ninth time overall, according to South Korea. The two Koreas haven’t competed under a single banner since 1991.The progress came as U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson warned about the possibility of war, telling fellow top diplomats in Canada that North Korea’s nuclear advancements had brought the world to a “tenuous stage.” President Donald Trump’s administration is seeking to maintain maximum pressure on North Korea even as Seoul reaches out to make the Olympics a success.In an interview with Reuters later Wednesday, Trump said he hoped the standoff with Pyongyang could be resolved "in a peaceful way, but it’s very possible that it can’t." […]

  • 2018/01/18 DARPA Program Aims to Extend Lifetime of Quantum Systems
    on January 18, 2018 at 5:00 am

    Whether it is excited electrons emitting photons in a lightbulb or the vibrational frequency of atoms in an atomic clock, quantum phenomena are simultaneously fundamental aspects of nature and the basis of current state-of-the-art and future technologies. This is particularly the case as sensor and device performance continue to improve and approach their fundamental limits. It is not lost on DARPA that controlling quantum phenomena is an increasingly important challenge in the realm of national defense. […]

  • Pentagon Suggests Countering Devastating Cyberattacks With Nuclear Arms
    on January 17, 2018 at 2:37 pm

    “A newly drafted United States nuclear strategy that has been sent to President Trump for approval would permit the use of nuclear weapons to respond to a wide range of devastating but non-nuclear attacks on American infrastructure, including what current and former government officials described as the most crippling kind […]

  • Terrorists pose nuclear threat, need to identify nations sponsoring them: Army chief
    on January 17, 2018 at 2:26 pm

    General Rawat has repeatedly warned against possible use of CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear) weapons by terrorist organisations. […]

  • Vancouver Talks Focus on Pressuring North Korea
    on January 17, 2018 at 2:04 pm

    Foreign ministers from 20 nations meeting in Vancouver in regard to North Korea say sanctions pressure must continue against the country until it abandons its nuclear weapons program. […]

  • Trump, Xi Hopeful Korean Contacts Will Change Pyongyang's Nuclear Weapons Pursuit
    on January 17, 2018 at 2:04 pm

    U.S. President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, are hopeful that recent contacts between South and North Korean officials will lead to a change in Pyongyang's "destructive behavior" pursuing nuclear weapons, the White House said Tuesday. […]

  • US to Keep Pressuring N Korea Until Its Abandons Its Nuclear Program - Tillerson
    on January 17, 2018 at 2:04 pm

    The international pressure campaign against North Korea will continue until Pyongyang makes a decision to fully denuclearize, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said during a Foreign Ministers' Meeting on Security and Stability on the Korean Peninsula on Tuesday. […]

  • UN chief believes war over North Korea nuclear weapons is avoidable
    on January 17, 2018 at 1:43 pm


  • Headlines for January 17, 2018
    on January 17, 2018 at 1:00 pm

    NYT: Pentagon Proposes Widening Permissible Use of Nuclear Weapons, Lawmakers Face Showdown over DACA & Budget, DHS Secretary Denies Hearing Trump's Racist Comment About "Shithole Countries", Mueller Subpoenas Steve Bannon as Part of Widening Probe, White House Doctor Says Trump is in Good Health, Senate Moves to Extend NSA Warrantless Surveillance Program  , Trump Admin Withholds $65 Million of Funding for U.N. Palestinian Agency, UNICEF: At Least 5,000 Children Killed or Wounded in Yemen Since 2015, DOJ: Former CIA Agent Suspected of Working with China Has Been Arrested, China: Democracy Activist Sentenced to Prison for 2014 Hong Kong Protests, Philippines: Journalists Decry Gov't Crackdown Against News Outlet Rappler, Majority of National Park Service Advisory Board Resigns, L.A. County Sheriff's Deputy Charged with Running Drug Trafficking Scheme, Wisconsin: Democrats Flip State Senate District, Chile: Pope Francis Apologizes for "Irreparable Damage" of Priest Sexual Abuse, Gymnasts Who Survived Sexual Abuse by Dr. Larry Nassar Testify in Court […]

  • Nations to consider more North Korea sanctions, U.S. warns on military option
    on January 17, 2018 at 11:03 am

    VANCOUVER (Reuters) - Twenty nations agreed on Tuesday to consider tougher sanctions to press North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson warned Pyongyang it could trigger a military response if it did not choose negotiations. […]

  • Pentagon Reportedly Weighing Using Nukes In Response To 'Large Cyberattacks’
    on January 17, 2018 at 10:38 am

    A draft of the Defense Department's new nuclear strategy says the U.S. could respond to certain “non-nuclear attacks” with nuclear weapons. […]

  • Pentagon considers nuclear response to retaliate for large cyber attacks
    on January 17, 2018 at 6:51 am

    Why use hack-back tactics when you can drop a nuke on your cyber attackers? According to the draft for the Pentagon’s 2018 Nuclear Posture Review, the U.S. would consider using nuclear weapons to respond to non-nuclear attacks. While the Pentagon’s ... […]

  • As America’s Nukes and Sensors Get More Connected, the Risk of Cyber Attack Is Growing
    on January 17, 2018 at 5:42 am

    Future nuclear weapons will be more sophisticated and better integrated with other equipment. That has benefits and drawbacks. […]

  • Collected Department Releases: Remarks With Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland at a Press Availability
    on January 17, 2018 at 4:30 am

    Press Availability Rex W. Tillerson Secretary of State Vancouver, Canada January 16, 2018 FOREIGN MINISTER FREELAND: Sorry to be a bit late. We had a lot we had to pack into the day. And thanks to everyone for joining us. I’d like to begin by acknowledging that the land on which we gather is the unceded territory of the Coast Salish peoples including the territories of Musqueam, the Squamish, and the Tsleil-Waututh Nations. (In French.) So first, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the United States and specifically my colleague, counterpart, Secretary Rex Tillerson, for cohosting this Foreign Ministerial on Security and Stability in the Korean Peninsula. For more than two decades the international community has advanced a range of initiatives to limit or dismantle North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs and related activities. In response and in direct contravention of its international obligations, North Korea has engaged in a deliberate and systematic effort to develop and enhance its capabilities. Nowhere else in the world do we see the proliferations of weapons and materials of mass destruction on the scale of North Korea’s program. We cannot stand by as this threat persists and worsens. The UN Security Council has adopted 10 resolutions in response to North Korea’s destabilizing actions in addition to convening successive emergency meetings following ballistic missile tests. Just last month Japan convened an extraordinary session of the UN Security Council at the foreign ministerial level to take stock of North Korea’s continued proliferation activities. The 20 nations represented here in Vancouver have agreed that we must work together to ensure that sanctions imposed on North Korea are strictly enforced. We also agreed that we must take significant steps to keep North Korea from evading sanctions and to sever financial lifelines for the country’s weapons of mass destruction. I do want to say clearly that we as a group harbor no hostility whatsoever towards North Korea or its people. We seek neither a regime change nor a collapse. What we do want is to resolve this crisis peacefully to achieve what is in our collective best interests, and that is security and stability on the Korean Peninsula. A North Korea that commits to the complete, verifiable, and irreversible dismantling of its nuclear program will have a secure place in the international community. Until and unless that goal is reached, the international community will continue to take the necessary steps to stop North Korea’s nuclearization and aggression. Thank you very much. Secretary Tillerson. SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, thank you also, Foreign Minister Freeland, and good evening to all. On behalf of the United States, I do want to thank Foreign Minister Freeland and the government and people of Canada for cohosting this important meeting of nations who are committed to peacefully resolving the North Korean issue. The United States is grateful as always that we can rely on our friend and neighbor, Canada, as a partner on North Korea along with a host of many other security issues where we have shared interest. I also want to thank the other participating nations, representatives of the UN Command sending states along with our trilateral partners – the Republic of Korea and Japan – that took part in this ministerial as well. This group of sending states nations who fought to ensure freedom and democracy will not just survive but ultimately thrive on the Korean Peninsula have maintained that same commitment in confronting the serious threat not just to freedom on the peninsula but a threat to the global community of nations. The steps they and indeed the broader international community have taken and will take to implement the maximum pressure campaign are essential to resolving this situation through diplomatic means, as the United States hopes to do. Our nations repeated a unified message that we have sent the regime before: We will not accept a nuclear-armed North Korea. All of us share one policy and one goal, and that is the complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. Our unity and our common cause with others in the region, most particularly China and Russia, will remain intact despite North Korea’s frequent attempts to divide us and sow dissension. Today we discussed ways to further increase pressure on North Korea through more effective sanctions implementation and compliance, and countries came forward with proposals on how they intend to do that. We agreed that the need for UN member-states, especially China and Russia, to fully implement agreed-upon sanctions is essential to their success. We discussed the importance of working together to counter sanctions evasion and smuggling. And we also issued a call to action to strengthen global maritime interdiction operations to foil the illicit ship-to-ship transfers. In doing so, let me be clear: We do not seek to interfere with legitimate maritime activities. Our diplomats in New York will continue to press for tighter sanctions on the DPRK should there be subsequent provocations. The goal of the maximum pressure campaign is and always has been to move North Korea towards credible negotiations on denuclearization. And our diplomatic talks have always been backed up by a strong and resolute military option. Today, however, we had constructive discussions about how to push our diplomatic efforts forward and prepare for the prospects of talks. But productive negotiations require a credible negotiating partner. North Korea has not yet shown themselves to be that credible partner. The United States has always been open to clear messages that North Korea – and we have sent clear messages to North Korea that we are ready for serious negotiations. North Koreans know our channels are open, and they know where to find us. But a sustained cessation of North Korea’s threatening behavior is necessary – is a necessary indicator of whether the regime is truly ready to pursue a peaceful, diplomatic resolution to the security threat that it has created. Our nations must remain united on sustaining pressure until North Korea takes concrete steps toward and ultimately reaches denuclearization. Again, I thank Foreign Minister Freeland for Canada’s resolve and determination in finding a diplomatic solution for denuclearizing the North Korean situation. The same goes for all other nations that were here with us today as well. And I thank our allies, Japan and the Republic of Korea. And finally, the United States extends our best wishes for a very successful Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Thank you. MODERATOR: So we’ll do questions starting with Canadian Glen McGregor from CTV. One question; no follow-up, please. QUESTION: Minister Freeland, is there a role for Canada in enforcing those sanctions specifically in maritime interdiction? And Secretary Tillerson, have you asked Canada and Canada’s military to play a role in this important part of enforcing these sanctions? FOREIGN MINISTER FREELAND: Well, nice to see you here, Glen. Thanks for coming. As Secretary Tillerson said, we had an extensive discussion of countersmuggling, sanctions evasion, and maritime interdiction. And one of the points that we discussed at length – and I think it would be fair to say the group of 20 nations agreed on – is not only are sanctions starting to bite, are they starting to have a positive effect, but the best next step for us to take is to be sure that those sanctions already in place with UN approval actually are fully implemented. So that was an issue we discussed at some length. And certainly, Canada has a strong role to play. We are working together on a number of different fronts. We’ve joined together with our American partners in capacity building for countries. There are a lot of countries we have found in the world who have the political will to implement sanctions but lack the technical capacity. And Canada is contributing $3.25 million to a joint effort with the United States to work on that capacity building. All of us collectively also agreed that in our bilateral interactions with countries around the world and in our interactions with regional groups that we are part of – for example, Canada, as you know, is a member of the Lima Group and I’ll be in Santiago at a Lima Group meeting next week – we’re going to continue to raise the issue of smuggling, of sanctions evasion, and continue to do everything we can at a diplomatic, at a technical level, to make sure that the sanctions that we have all agreed on, that the international community has agreed on, really are enforced. SECRETARY TILLERSON: So with respect to any request for Canadian military assistance or joint activities, there’s been none. And you asked it relative to the sanctions, because I think as you heard Foreign Minister Freeland describe, the sanctions by and large begin with voluntary compliance, and then we check to see if people if are complying or not, and there are subsequent actions that can be taken to ensure their compliance. In moving to the issue of maritime interdiction, this is subject to standard laws, international laws for maritime interdiction. And most of the actions that have been taken thus far have been taken actually in ports of call when vessels have been believed to have violated sanctions, then they have been detained in a port of call where the country is complying with the sanctions. So at this point it’s required very little military activity to enforce the sanctions other than we do share – we have information sharing so that we all understand what are the proper procedures to implement the sanctions and stay fully compliant with international laws, norms, and standards. MODERATOR: The next question, John Hudson, Buzzfeed. QUESTION: Hi, Mr. Secretary. What’s your message to African nations that are outraged and angry about the President’s alleged remarks about their countries? And more importantly, what are you doing to try to ensure that U.S. relations with an entire continent aren’t jeopardized? And Minister Freeland, many people are genuinely worried about the escalating rhetoric between Kim Jung-un and Donald Trump and worried that it can turn into a nuclear catastrophe. Do you share this fear? SECRETARY TILLERSON: With respect to U.S. relations with the African continent and African nations, the U.S. continues to be one of the most generous nations on the entire planet in terms of aid, assistance, mutual defense assistance, and economic development. And we had a very successful hosting of a conference of African nations and the African Union at the State Department here just late last year where we explored both economic issues, but we explored shared security issues. As you know, African nations, one of their greatest concerns is counterterrorism, and they are exposed to the effects of terrorist activities as well. So we have a very positive relationship with African nations. We share a number of security issues. We share a number of economic development issues. And I think those leaders know that the United States wants that relationship to continue to be strong. We know they want that relationship to be strong as well. So at this stage nothing has changed with respect to our relationship with African nations, and we’ve continued to see them wanting to strengthen our relationship in that regard as well. FOREIGN MINISTER FREELAND: So as I said my opening remarks, and I think it’s important for us to all be very clear on this, the source of the threat to the international community, the source of the illegal actions, the source of the nuclearization, is North Korea. It is North Korea’s actions which are making us all less safe and to which we all need to respond as allies and as an international community. We have been really delighted to cohost this important meeting with the United States. This is something that Rex and I have been talking about for a few months, and I think we all agreed together with our partners here that the timing has turned out to be really fortuitous because we are seeing – we want to be clearheaded, we don’t want to be in any way Pollyannas about this, but I think we collectively believe that the peaceful pressure is beginning to have an impact. All of us did welcome the talks between the two Koreas, and we see North Korea’s participation in the Olympics as a hopeful sign. And the really important thing about this meeting, I feel, is the fact that we worked together to show the solidarity of the international community and to show our belief that a diplomatic solution is both possible and essential. That’s what today has been about. MODERATOR: The next question, Sophie Jackman, Kyodo News. QUESTION: Good evening. For Secretary Tillerson, Japan and South Korea are currently at odds over the comfort women issue, particularly the 2015 bilateral agreement in which the United States played a large role. How do you think this issue will impact the unified response to North Korea? And as an ally of both countries, how will the United States try to help improve Japan-South Korea relations? And for Minister Freeland, given the existing tensions in the East and South China Seas, how will you make sure that the maritime interdiction doesn’t contribute to further heightening tensions? Thank you. SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, first let me address the U.S. trilateral relationship with Japan and the Republic of Korea. And that is a relationship that’s grounded in shared security interest, and the commitments among all three of us to that – to that trilateral arrangement is ironclad. It’s – it is in no way changed from what it historically has been. The issue of the comfort women is one that – it’s a very emotional issue for both sides, and it’s one that only they can resolve. And our role has been simply to encourage them to deal with the issue, do not let that issue stand in the way of the greater security threats that are common to all of us. And we know that there’s more that needs to be done. I think there have been helpful statements actually made by both sides recognizing that it is a difficult issue for both countries to deal with, and we hope ultimately they can move beyond that. We know it’s not easy for them. In terms of how it impacts our ability to strengthen the trilateral relationship, it’s not been an obstacle in that relationship around our shared security interests. FOREIGN MINISTER FREELAND: And as to the countersmuggling and the sanctions evasion, as we’ve already discussed, that issue was a subject of quite important focus and conversation today. And again, as we’ve already discussed this evening, a big part of the issue is being sure that we are all doing our own jobs at home, and a lot of the countries around the table talked about efforts that they are making at home to be sure that sanctions are not being evaded by their own nationals. So we devoted a lot of time to that. And I think the point about capacity building around the world is a really important one. What we are finding in all of our bilateral and regional interactions is this is a threat that has united the world. The world really appreciates that all of us are made less safe by North Korea’s actions. And part of what we need to do now is build on that political consensus to be sure that the enforcement actually follows, and that’s something that we talked at quite a technical level about doing, and I think we all left the room committed to doing our part. QUESTION: (In French.) FOREIGN MINISTER FREELAND: (In French.) MODERATOR: Next question, Barbara Plett Usher, BBC. QUESTION: Mr. Tillerson, you’ve made quite clear that you want this issue solved through diplomacy backed up by strong resolute options, as you just said. There are many reports of talk in the White House about the option of a limited military strike, a so-called “bloody nose” that would send a message to North Korea rather than start a war. Do you think that’s a bad idea? And in a related question, if I may, sir, the question that’s in the minds of many Americans especially after the false missile alert at the weekend, do Americans need to be worried about a possible war with Korea? And sorry, one more: Could you just clarify briefly the confusion over the past week, or the question, I should say, of whether the President has communicated through a direct channel to the North Korean leader? Thank you. SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, I’m not going to comment on issues that have yet to be decided among the National Security Council or the President, so I have no comment on the, quote, “bloody nose,” as you named it. With respect to whether Americans should be concerned about a war with North Korea, I think it’s – we all need to be very sober and clear-eyed about the current situation. As North Korea has continued to make significant advances in both its nuclear weapons, the lethality of those weapons as demonstrated by their last thermonuclear test as well as the continued progress they’ve made in their intercontinental ballistic missile systems, we have to recognize that that threat is growing. And if North Korea is not – does not choose the pathway of engagement, discussion, negotiation, then they themselves will trigger an option. I think our approach is, in terms of having North Korea choose the correct step, is to present them with that is the best option, that talks are the best option, that when they look at the – a military situation, that’s not a good outcome for them. When they look at the economic impact of ever-growing sanctions and the pressure campaign, there is no – there is no end to that. And I think for North Korea and the regime, what we hope they are able to realize is the situation only gets worse. It gets worse with each step they take, it gets worse with time. And that is not working to their objectives of wanting to be secure. They are not more secure. They are becoming less secure. They certainly are not more economically prosperous. They’re becoming less prosperous. And we do think that that message is beginning to – I don’t want to say resonate with them, but there is a realization with them that the rest of the world is quite resolute in this stand we’re taking that we will never accept them as a nuclear power. And so it’s time to talk, but they have to take the step that says they want to talk. And your last question was around? QUESTION: Whether or not the President has direct communications with the North -- SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, again, there’s just certain elements of this situation that I’m not going to comment upon. I don’t think it’s useful to comment because we’re at – relative to your prior question, we’re at a very tenuous stage in terms of how far North Korea has taken their program and what we can do to convince them to take an alternative path. And so I – when we get into who’s talking to who and what was said, if we want that to be made known or made public, we will announce it. Thank you. QUESTION: Yeah, my name is (inaudible) from Chosun Ilbo in the Republic of Korea. And I want to ask to the Secretary of the – Tillerson about the strategy on the North Korea. In the process of the pressuring the denuclearization and the pressure the Korean Peninsula, the strategy of the South – the Republic of Korea and the United States seems to be quite different. Although Korean Government pressure two-track strategy – both talking with North Korea and sanction – but the United States – State Government stay to the maximizing pressure and the sanction. So I want to know, why is the – why the differences of the policy between Korea and the United States on North Korea have occurred? And what direction do you think we should go to the forward to the peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula? And I also have a question to the Minister Freeland. I also want to know what we need to develop inter-Korean dialogue about Olympic and to develop debate on the peace and the denuclearization in the future. Thank you. SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, with respect to any differences or any daylight between the approach of the United States and the Republic of Korea, there is none. I think Foreign Minister Kang on multiple occasions in our discussions today reiterated the strong alignment with the international community’s approach of the maximum pressure campaign. And indeed, the Republic of Korea has gone beyond the UN Security Council resolutions and has imposed unilateral sanctions of their own in support of this maximum pressure campaign. And in fact, the Republic of Korea is the country that has detained two vessels for violating sanctions through ship-to-ship transfers. So I think everything that we discussed from President Trump to President Moon at the ministry of foreign affairs level as well as ministry of defense levels, we are completely aligned that the maximum pressure campaign is the correct strategy and that everyone must stick to that. Again, just as I said in my remarks, what is the purpose of the maximum pressure campaign? It is intended to cause North Korea to engage as a credible negotiating partner in addressing a pathway to a denuclearization of the peninsula. That is the purpose of the maximum pressure campaign. So we all are working towards the same goal with the same set of tactics. FOREIGN MINISTER FREELAND: Okay. And let me first of all thank you very much for being here together with the entire South Korean delegation. There is no country more deeply touched by North Korea’s actions and more knowledgeable about North Korea than South Korea. And one of the things that all of us acknowledged today was the tremendous stake that South Korea has in this issue. And I think a very important outcome of our conversation today was that it allowed all of us to show very strong solidarity with the people of South Korea, with the Government of South Korea, with Minister Kang in your country’s efforts. That’s very important to all of us. We had an opportunity to all congratulate South Korea on the inter-Korean dialogue, which has begun this month. I think we all need to be quite modest in our assessment of the progress thus far, but talking is a good thing and it’s a good thing that that’s happening. As Rex said, we are looking forward to peaceful and successful Olympics and Paralympics, and we’re pleased that North Korea will be participating. As to what it will take for that little beginning of a conversation to move into the conversation that the whole world needs, which is a conversation about denuclearization, what it’s going to take is for North Korea to make that choice. MODERATOR: Thank you. FOREIGN MINISTER FREELAND: And I just want to say one final thing: As your host, thank you to everyone for coming, for – particularly to our foreign visitors. We really appreciate it. This is an issue which matters very much to the world, and to Canadians, and we’re delighted that you are all here to pay attention to it. As a former journalist, I know how important your work is in sharing with all the people of the world the conversations that we’re having, and I hope you’ve had a great time in Vancouver, our Pacific city that we’re so proud of. Thank you very much. Merci. The Office of Website Management, Bureau of Public Affairs, manages this site as a portal for information from the U.S. State Department.External links to other Internet sites should not be construed as an endorsement of the views or privacy policies contained therein. […]

  • Nations at North Korea meeting commit to considering more sanctions
    on January 17, 2018 at 2:37 am

    Author: REUTERSID: 1516156314714825100Wed, 2018-01-17 03:00VANCOUVER: A 20-nation meeting on North Korea agreed on Tuesday to consider imposing unilateral sanctions on Pyongyang that go beyond those required by UN Security Council resolutions, the United States and Canada said in a joint statement. The meeting, to discuss North Korea’s nuclear weapons program, also agreed to support dialogue between the two Koreas “in hopes that it leads to sustained easing of tensions,” the statement added. The United States and Canada co-hosted the day-long meeting in Vancouver to discuss ways of forcing North Korea to give up its nuclear arms.Main category: WorldTags: Donald TrumpNorth KoreaPyongyangVancouver […]

  • Extreme weather and risk of nuclear weapons are the top threats for 2018, WEF says
    on January 17, 2018 at 1:11 am

    World entering 'critical period of intensified risks' in 2018, WEF says […]

  • Allies warn North Korea’s nuclear program must end
    on January 17, 2018 at 1:04 am

    Screws to be tightened on sanctions, ships may be stopped, searched […]

  • Opinion: Olympics diplomacy could solve the Korea crisis
    on January 16, 2018 at 10:09 pm

    Olympics diplomacy will get its day, even if it comes beneath the shadow of the North Korean nuclear program. […]

  • Nazarbayev Goes to Washington
    on January 16, 2018 at 9:17 pm

    Bilateral trade, Afghanistan, and North Korea's nukes were on the agenda. […]

  • Tillerson Calls For Continued Sanctions Pressure On North Korea
    on January 16, 2018 at 6:43 pm

    U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has called for continued sanctions pressure on North Korea to force it to abandon its nuclear weapons program. […]

  • World's largest wealth fund pulls out of BAE systems over nuclear weapons links
    on January 16, 2018 at 5:53 pm

    UK defence firm one of nine companies excluded from investment by Norway's Government Pension Fund Global on ethical grounds […]

  • (U//FOUO) DoD Nuclear Posture Review Draft January 2018
    on January 16, 2018 at 2:17 pm

    On January 27th, the President directed the Department of Defense to conduct a new Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) to ensure a safe, secure, and effective nuclear deterrent that safeguards the homeland, assures allies, and deters adversaries. This review comes at a critical moment in our nation’s history, for America confronts an international security situation that is more Complex and demanding than any since the end of the Cold War. In this environment, it is not possible to delay modernization of our nuclear forces and remain faithful sentinels of our nation’ s security and freedom for the next generation as well as our own. For decades, the United States led the world in efforts to reduce the role and number of nuclear Weapons. The 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) set a ceiling Of 6,000 accountable strategic nuclear warheads — a deep reduction from Cold War highs. Shorter-range nuclear weapons were almost entirely eliminated from America’s nuclear arsenal in the early 1990s. This was followed by the 2002 Strategic Offensive Reduction Treaty and the 2010 New START Treaty, which lowered strategic nuclear force levels to 1,550 accountable warheads. U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile has been reduced by more than 85 percent from its Cold War high. It was a promising time. Many hoped conditions had been set for deep reductions in global nuclear arsenals, and, perhaps, for their elimination. These aspirations have not been realized. America’s strategic competitors have not followed our example. world is more dangerous, not less. While Russia initially followed America’s lead and made similarly sharp reductions in its Strategic nuclear forces, it retained large numbers of non-strategic nuclear weapons. Today, Russia is modernizing these weapons as well as its strategic systems. Even more troubling has been Russia’s adoption of military strategies and capabilities that rely on nuclear escalation for their success. These developments, with Russia’s invasion of Crimea and nuclear threats against our allies, mark Moscow’s unabashed return to Great Power competition. China, too, is modernizing and expanding its considerable nuclear forces. Like Russia, China pursues entirely new nuclear capabilities tailored to achieve particular national security objectives. At the same time, China is modernizing its conventional military, challenging traditional U.S. military superiority in the Western Pacific. Elsewhere, the strategic picture is no less bleak. North Korea’s nuclear provocations threaten regional and global peace, despite universal condemnation by the United Nations. Iran’s nuclear ambitions remain a significant concern. Globally, nuclear terrorism remains a constant threat. We must look reality in the eye and see the world as it is, not as we wish it to be. “This NPR realigns our nuclear policy with a realistic assessment of the threats we face today and the uncertainties regarding the future security environment. Given the range of adversaries, their capabilities and strategic objectives, this review calls for a flexible, tailored nuclear strategy. In nuclear deterrence, no “one-size fits all.” A diverse set of nuclear capabilities provides an American President with flexibility to tailor the approach to deterring one or more potential adversaries in different circumstances. […]

  • Did the <b>US</b> underestimate North Korea&#39;s weapons program? It&#39;s not that simple.
    on January 16, 2018 at 2:03 pm

    Did U.S. intelligence agencies underestimate North Korea's nuclear weapons and missile programs? A recent New York Times article claimed President Trump was told that his administration would have at least four years “to slow or stop its development of a missile capable of hitting an American city ... […]

  • Tehran Reiterates 'Access to Military Sites is Not Part of Nuclear Deal'
    on January 16, 2018 at 2:03 pm

    Behrouz Kamalvandi, spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, has confirmed Tehran's adherence to the demands of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). […]

  • IAEA access to military sites not part of JCPOA: Nuclear spokesman
    on January 16, 2018 at 2:03 pm

    The spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) has stressed that his country will never permit the inspection of Iranian military sites. […]

  • AEOI: Iran serious in pursuing implementation of nuclear propellers
    on January 16, 2018 at 2:03 pm

    Spokesman of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Behrouz Kamalvandi said on Monday that Iran is seriously pursuing conduct of nuclear research and implementation of nuclear propellers in line with its predefined programs. […]

  • Can the U.S. and Russia work together? A new poll suggests some shared foreign policy goals
    on January 16, 2018 at 1:51 pm

    New comparative polling data shows that the American and Russian publics broadly agree on the importance of a number of key foreign policy issues, including the threat posed by the international terrorism and nuclear proliferation, as well as the need to bring a long-running civil war in Syria to an end. […]

  • Headlines for January 16, 2018
    on January 16, 2018 at 1:00 pm

    Reports: Pentagon Preparing for War with N. Korea & Developing New Nuclear Weapons, Panic in Hawaii as Residents Receive False Alarm Warning of Incoming Ballistic Missile, U.S. Ambassador to Panama Resigns Amid Fervor over Trump's "Shithole" Comments, Facing International Outrage, Trump Denies Being a Racist, Report: Trump Lawyers Paid to Silence Ex-Porn Star About Sexual Encounter with Trump, Chelsea Manning Running for U.S. Senate in Maryland, Pentagon to Escalate Afghanistan War, Sending 1,000 Troops & Additional Drones, Pentagon to Back Syrian Kurds to Form Border Security Force in Northern Syria, Iraq: 27 Killed in Double Suicide Bombing in Baghdad, Libya: 20 Killed in Clashes in Tripoli, Mahmoud Abbas Rejects U.S. as Mediator Between Palestine and Israel, Mexico: Journalist Carlos Domínguez Rodríguez Murdered in Nuevo Laredo, Honduras: Protests over Election Fraud Continue, Greece: Workers Launch Day-Long Strikes Against New Austerity Measures, California: Thousands Gather to Mourn 20 Killed in Mudslides Near Santa Barbara, Aryan Nations Gang Member Arrested in Cop Shooting; FBI Charges White Supremacist with Terrorism for Amtrak Plot, Former Klansman Edgar Ray Killen Dies in Prison, Exclusive: ICE Targets Immigration Activist Maru Mora Villalpando for Deportation, NYC: Hundreds Rally in Support of Ravi Ragbir & Jean Montrevil, Florida: Prisoners Launch Prison Strike on MLK Day to Protest Unpaid Work, Rev. Bernice King Slams Trump on Martin Luther King Jr. Day […]

  • Vancouver meeting focuses on sanctions as Koreas explore detente
    on January 16, 2018 at 9:39 am

    VANCOUVER (Reuters) - A meeting of states that backed South Korea in the Korean war will look at ways to better implement sanctions to push North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons, officials said, even as the North and South explore detente ahead of next month's Winter Olympics. […]

  • Saudis To Award Nuclear Power Contracts In December
    on January 16, 2018 at 12:00 am

    Saudi Arabia expects to award the contracts for the construction of its first nuclear reactors in December this year, and will be picking bidders from the pool of U.S., China, France, South Korea, and Russia, a Saudi official working with the project told Bloomberg on Monday. Saudi Arabia has received requests from five bidders from those countries, said Abdulmalik Alsabery, a consultant in the business development department at King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy. Alsabery declined to name the companies on the short list. “By […]

  • Russia’s Lavrov calls on US to ‘recognize reality’ on Iran
    on January 15, 2018 at 8:29 pm

    Author: AFPTue, 2018-01-16 03:00ID: 1516048157633793200MOSCOW: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Monday called on Washington to “recognize reality” on the Iran nuclear deal after US President Donald Trump demanded tough new measures to keep the agreement alive. “We will continue to work with the aim of the United States recognizing reality,” Lavrov said at at an annual press conference in Moscow on Monday. He added that US statements to end the deal “do not add optimism or stability.” Lavrov said the past year had not been easy from a foreign policy perspective as he took questions on Syria, Ukraine, the Korean peninsula and other global issues, in a diplomatic round-up of 2017. On Friday, Trump said Washington will not reimpose nuclear sanctions on Iran for the moment, but would withdraw later this year unless the terms of the deal are changed. “(The Americans) resort to methods that are, largely, questionable and unscrupulous, in order to contain their competitors,” Lavrov said. Trump called on European partners to work with the US to “fix the deal’s disastrous flaws.” Lavrov said it was “hard to say” what position European countries will have. “They are starting to somehow, I believe, call on looking for compromises. This will be a slippery slope in a very dangerous direction,” he said. Russia’s chief diplomat went on to warn that a withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal will have a negative effect on the North Korea crisis. “If Kim Jong-Un is required to stop (North Korea’s) nuclear military program and, in exchange, is promised sanctions will be lifted then this is precisely the essence of the agreements between the world community and Iran,” Lavrov said. “If this arrangement is taken away and Iran is told: You remain within the framework of your obligations and we will reimpose sanctions — then put yourself in North Korea’s place,” he added. Lavrov also said threats coming from Washington in 2017 had “seriously aggravated” tensions not only in North Korea but in different parts of the world as well. Under the hard-won 2015 deal with Russia, the US, China, France, Britain, Germany and the EU, Iran agreed to curb its nuclear program in exchange for lifting a raft of international sanctions. America’s allies see the accord as the best way to thwart Iran’s nuclear ambitions and as a victory for diplomacy. Iran on Saturday rejected any modification of the deal after Trump’s comments. Main category: Middle-EastTags: RussiaMoscowrelated_nodes: UK air force scrambles 2 fighters to intercept Russian jetsRussian military conducts massive missile drillsRussia says zone for US-backed rebels could end up splitting Syria […]

  • President Rouhani orders implementation of nuclear propeller project
    on January 15, 2018 at 2:01 pm

    Head of Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali Akbar Salehi late on Friday announced President Rouhani's order for implementation of nuclear propeller project. […]

  • All parties must continue to implement JCPOA: China FM
    on January 15, 2018 at 2:01 pm

    Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has urged all signatories to the multilateral 2015 agreement on Iran's nuclear program to continue its implementation amid US threats to withdraw from the deal. […]