John Kerry today warned North Korea to halt a recent spate of rhetoric and actions, and he vowed that the US would defend itself and allies South Korea and Japan from any trouble. The secretary of state's comments came after North Korea ratcheted up an almost daily string of threats toward the three nations with an announcement that it would revive a long-dormant nuclear reactor and ramp up production of atomic weapons material.
"The bottom line, very simply, is that what Kim Jong-Un has been choosing to do is provocative, it is dangerous, reckless, and the United States will not accept the DPRK as a nuclear state," Kerry said at a joint news conference with South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se. Reviving the reactor would be "a direct violation" of North Korea's international commitments and a "very serious step," he added. Still, both Kerry and his South Korean counterpart said the door remained open for North Korea to return to multi-national nuclear disarmament talks.