Ardern says New Zealand ready to intervene in North Korea

NZ Herald Staff,
Publish Date
Saturday, 18 November 2017, 5:18PM

New Zealand will intervene in North Korea if backed by a United Nations resolution, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern reiterated in an interview.

Ardern says the increase in testing and capability of the tests conducted by North Korea show there is a "genuine threat" coming from the country.

"Every member of the international community needs to play a role," she told Patrick Gower on The Nation.

She added that every world leader needs to "put pressure on Pyongyang to make sure they are responding to the sanctions and messages coming from the international community".

Ardern maintains that military intervention is an absolute last resort and other avenues should be explored first.

"We should use every tool available to us bar military action," she said.

"One of the reasons we're so firm on that is we're yet to exhaust all of the channels that we have."

Foreign Minister Winston Peters has in the past been asked by the US to navigate escalating tensions with North Korea and Ardern does not discard the possibility the same thing might happen again.

"To date we haven't had that request, but we remain absolutely available to play whatever role that we can.

"That speaks to the level of diplomacy and level of relationship I've seen Mr Peters has with members of the international community.

"I'd never be closed off to the option," she added.

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