N. Korea biggest challenge to missile non-proliferation: Seoul

The talks are between Secretary of State John Kerry and Carter, and their South Korean counterparts Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se and Defense Minister Han Min-koo.

The United States and South Korea agreed on Wednesday to step up military and diplomatic efforts to counter North Korea's nuclear and missile programs, saying they posed a "grave" security threat following repeated tests this year.

North Korea has been anxious about preemptive strikes by Washington and Seoul since the allies have stepped up their military drills in the Korean Peninsula.

"North Korea is one of the issues that we aren't paying enough attention to", she said.

He also touted the importance of trilateral cooperation between South Korea, the USA and Japan in coordinating responses to Pyongyang's nuclear and missile provocations.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter has reiterated the importance of South Korea to Washington's security policy in the Asia-Pacific region. "This includes our commitment to provide extended deterrence, guaranteed by the full spectrum of US defense capabilities", Carter said in opening remarks.

They will be stationed in the southern part of the nation to detect North Korean submarine-launched ballistic missiles attacking from southern waters. He said the worldwide community needs to cooperate so the North "pays a price for its unsafe actions".

North Korea has made strides in both creating and launching missiles: The country has created nuclear weapons using both uranium and plutonium, and perfected many aspects of the missile's carrier capabilities, among other things, she explained.

Kerry said this was "obviously being abused. because the greatest amount of coal, and the greatest amount of revenue, historically, has just passed between China and North Korea".

"I think the Chinese, Americans, South Korea, and Japan need to work together to figure out what to do about North Korea, she said. And if indeed that was out goal, we wouldn't be sitting around waiting" while they get additional nuclear weapons, he said.

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