US, Canada to co-host meeting on North Korean nuclear threat in January

US, Canada to co-host meeting on North Korean nuclear threat in January
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The U.S. and Canada announced Tuesday that they will co-host a meeting with representatives from nations around the world in January in a show of solidarity against North Korea's nuclear program.

Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland announced the meeting during a joint news conference with Secretary of State Rex TillersonRex Wayne TillersonThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by AT&T - Supreme Court lets Texas abortion law stand Trump-era ban on travel to North Korea extended Want to evaluate Donald Trump's judgment? Listen to Donald Trump MORE, saying that Washington and Ottawa are "aligned" in their stance against a nuclear-armed North Korea.

"We will use this gathering as an opportunity to advance our work on diplomatic efforts towards a more peaceful, prosperous and nuclear-free future on the North Korean Peninsula, and to demonstrate international solidarity in our condemnation of North Korea's actions," Freeland said.

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The meeting will primarily be attended by representatives from countries that sent troops to support a United Nations unified command backing South Korea during the Korean War. Other regional players, like South Korea and Japan, will also attend, officials said.

Tillerson said at the news conference that the meeting, which is set to take place in Vancouver, will focus on advancing the global pressure campaign to halt North Korea's nuclear weapons program. 

"I appreciate the minister's willingness to co-host this event as we continue to find ways to advance the pressure campaign against North Korea, to send North Korea a unified message from the international community that we will not accept you as a nuclear nation, a nuclear weapons nation, and that all of us share one policy and one goal," he said. "And that is full, complete, verifiable, denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula." 

North Korea has stepped up its weapons tests over the past year, despite warnings and increased pressure from the Trump administration.

In September, the isolated country detonated what it said was a hydrogen bomb — a development that, if true, would signal a major milestone in Pyongyang's pursuit of nuclear weapons.

North Korea also tested last month what is believed to be its most advanced ballistic missile yet, launches that prompted condemnation from the international community.