Bush Repeats Warning to North Korea Against Missile Tests
21 June 2006
President Bush says North Korea must live up to its international obligations and abide by agreements on missile testing. The president took part in a one-day summit in Vienna with European Union leaders.
President Bush says, in essence, if North Korea wants to be part of the international community it must live by the rules.
"The North Koreans have made agreements with us in the past and we expect them to keep their agreements," said President Bush. "For example, agreements on test launches. We think it would be in the world's interest to know what they are testing, what they intend to do on their test."
The president says it is worrisome that a non-transparent regime has announced it has nuclear warheads and there are indications it may want to test a long-range missile capable of hitting the United States.
"And so we have been working with our partners, particularly in that part of the world to say to the North Koreans that this is not the way you conduct business in the world," he said. "It is not the way that peaceful nations conduct their affairs."
Mr. Bush makes specific mention of the role China has played in efforts to find a diplomatic solution to the North Korean nuclear dispute.
"One of our strategies on North Korea is to make sure we include other countries as a part of our consortium to deal with this non-transparent regime," noted President Bush. "And China is an integral part of what we call the six-party talks and I am pleased they are taking responsibility in deal with the leader of North Korea. It is a very positive sign."
The president spoke at a press conference in Vienna following his talks with the leadership of the European Union.
Earlier in the day, former South Korean President Kim Dae-jung announced he was canceling a good-will trip to North Korea because of concerns Pyongyang may be about to conduct a long-range missile test. At the same time, South Korea warned it might reduce food aid to the North.
North Korea contends it has the right to test and develop ballistic missiles. Satellite images have indicated plans for a launch are under way at a North Korean missile launch site.
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