DONALD TRUMP vowed to stand ‘100 per cent’ behind Japan after a ballistic missile test by North Korea.
It came after the regime launched a weapon from North Pyongan province that flew 310 miles before landing in the Sea of Japan.
The test on Saturday night was thought to have been timed to coincide with a visit to the US by Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe.
Speaking to reporters, Mr Abe said: ‘North Korea’s most recent missile launch is absolutely intolerable. President Trump and I myself completely share the view that we are going to promote further co-operation between the two nations. And also we are going to further reinforce our alliance.’
Mr Trump, who during the election race accused allies in Asia of freeloading under the nuclear umbrella provided by the US, added: ‘I want everybody to understand, and fully know, that the United States of America stands behind Japan, its great ally, 100 per cent.’
Later, White House adviser Stephen Miller said the US was going to ‘reinforce and strengthen our vital alliances in the Pacific region’. He told Fox News Sunday that this was ‘part of our strategy to deter and prevent the increasing hostility that we’ve seen in recent years from the North Korean regime’.
South Korea’s joint chiefs of staff said it was working with the international community ‘to ensure a corresponding response to punish the North’.
It added the launch was ‘aimed at drawing attention from the international community, and showing off its nuclear and missile capabilities in protest against the new US government’.