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Pyongyang displays weakness, Obama says

May 1, 2012 at 9:37 AM   |   Comments

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WASHINGTON, May 1 (UPI) -- Provocative actions by the government in North Korea are a sign of weakness and growing isolation, U.S. President Barack Obama said.

North Korea agreed to place a moratorium on nuclear activity and long-range missile tests in exchange for substantial food assistance from the United States. The deal collapsed last month after North Korea tried to launch a satellite into orbit using a long-range rocket.

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda, during a visit to Washington this week, said he believed North Korea was preparing to test a nuclear device.

A series of missile launches in 2009 coincided with the detonation of a nuclear device by the North Koreans. Pyongyang left negotiations and called on nuclear inspectors to leave the country that year.

Obama, alongside the Japanese prime minister, said both sides envisioned an Asia-Pacific region where international rules and norms are upheld.

"As such, we continue our close consultations on the provocative actions of North Korea, which are a sign of weakness and not strength, and only serve to deepen Pyongyang's isolation," he said.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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