Renews Call for bold, realistic strategy to peacefully resolve nuclear threat
Washington (August 28, 2017) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), top Democrat on the East Asia Subcommittee of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released the following statement denouncing today’s North Korean launch of a ballistic missiles over Japan amid new indications that North Korea may be preparing for its sixth nuclear test. Senator Markey, who returned last Thursday from leading a Congressional delegation to Korea, Japan, and the China-North Korea border, urgently called on the Trump administration to pursue a bold new strategy of sharply intensified economic pressure and resolute military defense and deterrence in undivided alliance with South Korea and Japan to address the threat from Pyongyang. Senator Markey has been a leading voice calling for direct negotiations with North Korea and is working with colleagues on the Foreign Relations and Banking Committees to develop a legislative response that will provide the policy guidance as well as the legislative mandates and authorities to put such a strategy into effect.
"This week's new North Korean testing activity highlights the need for The United States to immediately pursue a bold, realistic strategy in close concert with our allies in Korea and Japan, and working cooperatively with China, to negotiate an immediate freeze on North Korean nuclear and ballistic missile testing," said Senator Markey. “There is no military solution for a North Korea with nuclear weapons, so we must immediately and directly negotiate with Pyongyang for agreement to refrain from nuclear and ballistic missile testing in exchange for confidence-building measures from the United States to reassure the North Korean government that our military forces in the region are there only to deter and defend, not to attack North Korea. Upon such an agreement, the United States and our South Korean allies should continue direct negotiations with Pyongyang on two closely coordinated tracks, one with the United States leading direct negotiations toward denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, and the second with the Republic of Korea leading direct negotiations toward social, cultural, and intergovernmental relations.
"Having now visited this region and met with their leaders, I am entirely committed to do everything in my power to avoid a second catastrophic war on the Korean Peninsula."