US Vice President Kamala Harris will hold urgent talks Friday with leaders from Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand and Canada after North Korea fired a suspected intercontinental ballistic missile, a US official said.
Harris, taking part in an Asia-Pacific summit in Bangkok, will meet the five leaders on the sidelines “to consult on the DPRK’s recent ballistic missile launch”, the White House official said, using the North’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
The meeting will include prime ministers Fumio Kishida of Japan, Han Duck-soo of South Korea, Anthony Albanese of Australia, Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand and Justin Trudeau of Canada.
Japan said that the missile landed in its waters and that it had the range to hit the US mainland. It follows weeks of spiraling tensions with North Korea, which US intelligence believes is preparing a seventh nuclear test.
The White House called the latest launch “a brazen violation of multiple UN Security Council resolutions” that “needlessly raises tensions” in the region.
President Joe Biden met Sunday with both Kishida and South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol on the sidelines of a Southeast Asian summit in Cambodia, issuing a joint warning against a nuclear test by North Korea — which described the three-way meeting as proof of US hostility.
Harris is representing the United States at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Bangkok after Biden returned to Washington for his granddaughter’s wedding.