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Date TimeNovember 24, 2017
VoiceRUSSIA fears the United States is trying to provoke North Korea so Washington has an excuse to flood the region with troops.

PUTIN’S FEAR: Trump is using North Korea as guise to line up troops near RUSSIA

Vladimir Putin’s foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said Moscow was concerned at Japan allowing the US to use its territory as a base for a military build-up in north Asia.
The Kremlin chief said: "We are expressing deep concern, with facts to back it up, that Japan along with South Korea is becoming a territory for the deployment of elements of the US global missile defence system which is being rolled out in that region under the pretext of the North Korea threat.
"We have no problems directly with Japan, we do not see risks there. We see risks because of the proliferation of a global US missile defence system on the territory of countries that neighbour Russia, including Japan."

PUTIN’S FEAR: Trump is using North Korea as guise to line up troops near RUSSIA

Mr Lavrov was speaking at a joint press conference with his Japanese counterpart, Taro Kono, after talks between the two men in Moscow.
He said: ”We are alarmed that in the last two months when North Korea conducted no tests or rocket launches, it seemed that Washington was not happy about that, and tried to do things that would irritate and provoke Pyongyang.”
He said the US had continued to conduct military exercises in the region during that two month period and had adopted additional sanctions against Pyongyang.

PUTIN’S FEAR: Trump is using North Korea as guise to line up troops near RUSSIA



Referring to US officials, he said: "It's as if they are hoping the North Koreans will lash out again, and then it would be possible to engage in military options.
"As you know, the US leadership has said many times that all options are on the table, including military options, and we note that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, at a meeting with President Trump in early November, said that he supports the American position 100 per cent.”
Faced with North Korean missile tests and threats from Pyongyang, Tokyo is considering buying the US-designed Aegis Ashore missile defence system, according to government sources in Japan.

PUTIN’S FEAR: Trump is using North Korea as guise to line up troops near RUSSIA

Mr Lavrov said Moscow was particularly concerned the Aegis Ashore system could be adapted to fire Tomahawk missiles and warned that would be in violation of a US-Russian arms control treaty.
Washington and its regional allies deny they are seeking a military build-up, saying that they are taking the minimum steps necessary to protect themselves from possible aggressive acts by North Korea.

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