Boris Johnson condemns 'reckless' North Korea and says 'all options are on the table'

Posted On: 
3rd September 2017

Boris Johnson has said 'all options are on the table' following North Korea’s latest strike but warned international allies against taking military action to tackle the rogue state.

Boris responded to North Korea's latest weapons test
Sky News

Pyongyang announced earlier today that it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb that could be loaded on to a long-range missile.

The action has so far been roundly condemned by global leaders including US President Donald Trump, who said "appeasement with North Korea will not work".

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However the Foreign Secretary said while the test suggested a “new order of threat' and called on China to ramp up sanctions against the regime, he would urge the US and South Korea to explore further diplomatic options before launching military action.

“There’s no question that this is another provocation; it’s reckless,” he said.

“They seem to be moving closer towards a hydrogen bomb, which if fitted to a successful missile would unquestionably present a new order of threat.

“We have to consider how to respond and it’s our view in the UK, overwhelmingly that peaceful, diplomatic means are the best and we think the sanctions route still holds potential.

“China is responsible for 90% of North Korea’s trade and North Korea only has six months of oil supplies left. There is scope to continue to put pressure on the regime."

Mr Johnson said North Korea could still be talked into “common sense” and warned that military action could lead to retaliation that would “vaporise” neighbouring South Korea’s capital.

“It’s certainly our view that none of the military options are good. It is of course right to say that all options are on the table, but we really don’t see any easy military solution…

“The distance between North Korea and Seoul is very, very small and they could basically vaporise large parts of the South Korean population even with conventional weapons, so that’s not really very easy to threaten or to deliver.

“Much more productive we think is to continue with the international diplomatic effort, working with our Chinese friends, with our Japanese friends, with the Russians, all of whom have a big, big stake in the matter.”