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President Donald Trump delivered a combative address to the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, singling out North Korea and threatening to "destroy" the communist dictatorship if the United States is forced to defend itself.
Urging China to put more pressure on Pyongyang and derisively referring to dictator Kim Jong Un as "Rocket Man," the president issued a stern warning to the rogue regime in language rarely heard from U.S. presidents addressing the international organization.
Read Trump's full comments on North Korea:
No one has shown more contempt for other nations and for the well-being of their own people than the depraved regime in North Korea. It is responsible for the starvation deaths of millions of North Koreans and for the imprisonment, torture, killing and oppression of countless more. We were all witness to the regime's deadly abuse when an innocent American college student, Otto Warmbier, was returned to America only to die a few days later. We saw it in the assassination of the dictator's brother using banned nerve agents in an international airport. We know it kidnapped a sweet, 13-year-old Japanese girl from a beach in her own country to enslave her as a language tutor for North Korea's spies.
If this is not twisted enough, now North Korea's reckless pursuit of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles threatens the entire world with unthinkable loss of human life. It is an outrage that some nations would not only trade with such a regime, but would arm, supply and financially support a country that imperils the world with nuclear conflict. No nation on Earth has an interest in seeing this band of criminals arm itself with nuclear weapons and missiles. The United States has great strength and patience, but if it is forced to defend itself or its allies, we will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea. Rocket Man is on a suicide mission for himself and for his regime.
The United States is ready, willing and able, but hopefully, this will not be necessary. That's what the United Nations is all about. That's what the United Nations is for. Let's see how they do. It is time for North Korea to realize that the denuclearization is its only acceptable future. The United Nations Security Council recently held two unanimous 15-0 votes adopting hard-hitting resolutions against North Korea, and I want to thank China and Russia for joining the vote to impose sanctions along with all of the other members of the Security Council. Thank you to all involved. But we must do much more. It is time for all nations to work together to isolate the Kim regime until it ceases its hostile behavior.