By Savannah Smith  |  04-14-2017   News
Photo credit: Alain Lacroix | Dreamstime.com

Vice President Mike Pence will go on a 10-day visit to Asia, starting off with his Easter Sunday visit to close ally South Korea. It is seen as a strong sign that the U.S. remains fully committed to South Korea amidst the rising tensions over threats of North Korea's nuclear program.

The trip to Asia will be Pence's first as a Vice President and coincides with threats of Pyongyang conducting its sixth nuclear test. U.S. senior intelligence officials have said that the U.S. will launch a preemptive strike against North Korea if it feels that the new nuclear test will be unavoidable and forthcoming. President Trump has already deployed two destroyer vessels to the Korean peninsula, while heavy bombers are already strategically positioned in Guam.

The USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier strike group has already been diverted to the areas. U.S. officials have also clarified that any strike against rogue state North Korea would need the permission of American close ally South Korea. South Korea foreign minister Yu Byung confirmed that the U.S. officials have repeatedly reaffirmed that it will closely discuss with them its North Korea-related measures. The South Korean official said that the U.S. gave assurances it will not conduct the strike if South Korea is against it. Pence will celebrate Easter with U.S. and Korean troops on Sunday. The VP will hold talks on Monday with acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn. Pence is set to arrive in Seoul only a day after North Korea's biggest national day, the "Day of the Sun."

North Korea is expected to launch its nuclear test on that day as the country also celebrates the anniversary of the birth of the nation's founder. The U.S. gave assurances as well that they have a contingency measure for Pence's trip should it coincide with the nuclear test by North Korea's barbaric dictator Kim Jong Un.A U.S. foreign policy adviser said that North Korea's nuclear test is not a question of if, it's a question of when. Since there may be no stopping North Korea, then the U.S. will just be well prepared to counter that.

Pence will also visit Japan, Indonesia and Australia where he is expected to discuss with the countries' leaders the continuing aggression and belligerence of North Korea. Pence will also discuss trade matters with the Asian countries for his visit. He will hold economic talks with Japan on Tuesday as requested by President Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Source:

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-pence-asia-idUSKBN17G08X

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