Washington (July 4, 2017) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), the top Democrat on the East Asia Subcommittee of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released the following statement after North Korea conducted what it claimed was a successful test of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) capable of reaching the United States. Senator Markey has been the leading Congressional voice calling on President Trump to adopt a bold new approach toward North Korea by engaging in direct negotiations with Pyongyang, backed by increased sanctions pressure from China and regional military deterrence.
“North Korea’s latest missile test on the eve of America’s Independence Day shows that Pyongyang is committed to provoking and threatening the United States and our allies. But instead of vague Twitter bluster, President Trump should answer North Korea’s dangerous test with a coherent strategy of direct diplomacy with Pyongyang and increased economic sanctions pressure from China. As this recent missile test shows, if the United States fails to adopt a bold new approach toward North Korea that halts and reverses their nuclear and missile programs, each additional test will bring North Korea closer to the capability of delivering a nuclear weapon to American cities.
“President Trump must realize that there is no military solution to this threat. Unilateral action will only escalate tension, increase the paranoia of Kim Jong Un, and bring us closer to what everyone agrees would be a catastrophic war. I urge President Trump in his meeting with Chinese President Xi this week at the G20 to have a serious discussion about how the United States and China can cooperate to achieve their shared goal of a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula. We need China to put serious pressure on North Korea to bring Pyongyang back to real denuclearization negotiations.”