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Trump says hopes to avoid military option on N. Korea

U.S. President Donald Trump said Thursday that while military
action against North Korea remains an option, it is one he hopes will
not be necessary.

"Military action would certainly be an option. Is it inevitable?
Nothing is inevitable," Trump told reporters at the White House. "I
would prefer not going to the route of the military, but it's
something, certainly, that could happen."

Trump made the remarks amid heightened tensions in Northeast
Asia and beyond after North Korea conducted its sixth and most
powerful nuclear test on Sunday following Pyongyang's test-launches
of two intercontinental ballistic missiles in July.

Referring to the series of weapons tests, Trump said, "North
Korea is behaving badly and it's got to stop."

Trump, who took office in January, said years of talks between
successive U.S. administrations and North Korea have done little to
rein in the country.

"We've had presidents for 25 years now, they've been talking,
talking, talking, and the day after an agreement is reached, new work
begins in North Korea, continuation on nuclear."

The Republican president said the U.S. military "has never been
stronger," but that "hopefully" Washington will not have to use it
against Pyongyang.

"If we do use it on North Korea, it will be a very sad day for
North Korea," he said.

Meanwhile, the foreign ministers of the United States and
Britain have affirmed the need for "all countries, including China,"
to take action to exert diplomatic and economic pressure on
Pyongyang, the State Department said Thursday.

In telephone talks Wednesday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson
and British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson condemned the latest test
of what North Korea said was a hydrogen bomb that can be loaded into
an ICBM capable of hitting distant targets including New York and
Washington.

They discussed the need for increased international pressure on
North Korea, including through a "robust" new U.N. Security Council
sanctions resolution, according to the department.

A draft resolution calls on U.N. member states to impose an oil
embargo on North Korea as a way of compelling it to change behavior
following its latest provocation.

But China and Russia, two countries critics say are economic
enablers of North Korea's nuclear weapons and ballistic missile
programs, have claimed that Pyongyang's weapons development should be
addressed through dialogue, not additional sanctions. (Sept. 7)