OTTAWA — Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland announced Tuesday there will be a special summit on the North Korean threat to be held in Vancouver in January 2018.
The forum will be jointly hosted by Tillerson and Freeland who are inviting to attend all the nations who fought in the Korean War of 1950-53.
The list of invitees is being called the “Vancouver Group” until further notice and both Tillerson and Freeland expressed hope that the rebuilt coalition will assist in de-escalating the nuclear crisis in North Korea.
“We continue to find ways to advance the pressure campaign against North Korea, and send a unified message from the international community: ‘We will not accept you as a nuclear weapons nation,’” Tillerson stated, adding that “full and complete and verifiable denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula” was the objective.
Tillerson further emphasized that the conference would be sending a clear signal to North Korea that the rest of the world is concerned about its nuclear program and is ready to negotiate with the North Koreans, but “we can’t talk unless North Korea is ready to talk.” Tillerson promised to keep up the “pressure campaign” on the rogue state. “We will not be rolling any of it back,” he said.
For her part, Freeland, called the Vancouver summit clear evidence that “the international community is acting in concert to speak to the government of North Korea and to say this is threatening us all.”
Tillerson denied he was charting a diplomatic path that was in any way different from President Donald Trump, whom some reporters insisted was emphasizing a military option only.
“The president’s campaign has always been…a pressure campaign of sanctions, and diplomatic pressure,” he said.
Conservative Member of Parliament James Bezan told The Daily Caller Wednesday that the official opposition is “encouraging the government to use every opportunity to discuss the possibility of Canada joining BMD [Ballistic Missile Defense] and making it part of the NORAD mission” at the upcoming summit.
”The Trudeau government must put the protection of Canadians from potential missile attacks by North Korea ahead of Liberal dogma. Justin Trudeau needs to do more than just reopen mothballed bomb shelters for his cabinet and inner circle in case of a rogue missile from North Korea hitting Canada,” said the Conservative defense critic.
After the news conference, Tillerson met with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to further discuss North Korea as well as the increasingly strained renegotiation of NAFTA.