President Donald Trump has threatened to deal with North Korea over its nuclear enrichment as he added that time for patience is over.
US President Donald Trump issued a fresh warning to North Korea on Monday, saying theÂ time for â€śstrategic patienceâ€ť is over. He spoke in Japan after winning Japanâ€™s backing for his policy of considering all options to rein in the rogue state.
Trump described the Northâ€™s nuclear programme as â€śa threat to the civilised world and international peace and stabilityâ€ť on the second day of his Asia tour dominated by the crisis.
He had signalled in the past that Washington could look beyond a diplomatic solution to the Northâ€™s nuclear weapons ambitions and consider military intervention.
â€śThe era of strategic patience is over,â€ť he declared alongside his host, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
Under former president Barack Obama, the United States had ruled out engaging the North until it made a tangible commitment to de-nuclearisation.
Washington hoped sanctions pressure and internal stresses in the isolated country would bring about change but critics said the policy gave Pyongyang room to push ahead with its nuclear ambitions.
Close ally Abe echoed Trumpâ€™s remarks, voicing Japanâ€™s support for Washingtonâ€™s policy that â€śall options are on the tableâ€ť to deal with the North Korean threat
Abe, whose country is in the firing line of North Korean missiles, also announced Japanese sanctions on the assets of 35 North Korean groups and individuals.
The United Nations has adopted multiple rounds of sanctions against the reclusive North, the most recent in September following its sixth nuclear test and a flurry of missile launches.
Earlier, Trump had appeared to adopt a more conciliatory tone towards North Korea, saying he would not rule out talks with its bellicose young leader Kim Jong-Un.
â€śI would sit down with anybody,â€ť he said. â€śI donâ€™t think itâ€™s strength or weakness, I think sitting down with people is not a bad thing,â€ť he said in a television interview.
â€śSo I would certainly be open to doing that but weâ€™ll see where it goes, I think weâ€™re far too early.â€ť
And the president again praised the â€śgreat peopleâ€ť of North Korea, adding: â€śthey are under a very repressive regimeâ€ť and that he hoped it â€śworks out for everyone.â€ť
But Pyongyang showed no sign of let-up in its attacks on Trump, with ruling party newspaper Rodong Sinmun calling him the â€ślunatic old man of the White Houseâ€ť and saying there was no telling when he would start a nuclear war.
Abe and Trumpâ€™s joint news conference capped two days of chummy behaviour in which the two golf fans have teed off for nine holes and enjoyed informal and relaxed dinners.
Abe said they had enjoyed each otherâ€™s company so much over a dinner of scallops and steak on Sunday night that they lost track of time, while Trump said their relationship was â€śextraordinary.â€ť
The trip has also provided lighter moments, such as when Trump appeared to lose patience feeding koi carp in the imperial palace and tipped his whole box into the pond, to the evident amusement of his secretary of state.
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