Trump’s aide blames Hillary Clinton for North Korean nuclear test

Trump’s aide blames Hillary Clinton for North Korean nuclear test

New York, Sep 10 (IANS) In another scathing attack on Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, Trump’s campaign has blamed her for North Korea’s latest nuclear weapons test

The test, which came on the 68th anniversary of North Korea’s founding, “is yet one more example of Hillary Clinton’s catastrophic failures as secretary of state,” The Politico quoted Trump communications aide Jason Miller as saying.

“Clinton promised to work to end North Korea’s nuclear programme as secretary of state, yet the programme has only grown in strength and sophistication,” Miller added in his statement.

Trump’s campaign also raised doubts about President Barack Obama’s handling of North Korea.

Meanwhile, Clinton issued a measured statement subtly distancing herself from President Obama and criticising Trump without using his name.

Clinton called the test “outrageous and unacceptable” in a statement of her own, describing North Korea’s “determination to develop a deliverable nuclear weapon” as a “direct threat to the US”.

And while she praised Obama’s “call to both strengthen the sanctions passed earlier this year with the United Nations and to impose additional sanctions,” she also hinted at some distance between them, urging the US to “make sure” China will “meaningfully increase pressure on North Korea.”

Clinton then hit back at Trump by saying that this was another reminder that America must elect a president who can confront the threats we face with steadiness and strength.

“We need a commander-in-chief committed to a bipartisan foreign policy, who can bring together top experts with deep experience to solve the toughest challenges,” she said.

“And we need a president committed to reducing – not increasing – the number of nuclear weapons and nuclear states in the world,” she added in a likely reference to Trump’s past suggestion that Japan should be encouraged to develop its own nuclear weapons.

Obama denounced North Korea earlier on Friday, condemning the nuclear test “in the strongest possible terms as a grave threat to regional security and to international peace and stability” and vowing to press for new sanctions.

The test, North Korea’s fifth and the fourth on Obama’s watch, threatens to raise security tensions in Asia just as the president returns from summit meetings in China and Laos, the report said.

Trump stresses social issues at gathering of conservatives

Washington, Sep 10 (IANS) Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump sought to position himself as the voice of moral rectitude during his speech at a conference of religious conservatives.

Addressing the Values Voters Summit in Washington, the real estate mogul said on Friday night that if elected, he would push for the repeal of a 1954 piece of legislation known as the Johnson amendment, which bars tax-exempt entities – such as churches – from endorsing political candidates, EFE news reported.

“They (members of the clergy) have been stopped from talking and speaking by a law. And we’re going to get rid of that law so fast,” Trump said.

In fact, the Johnson amendment only applies to political speech from the pulpit, and US religious leaders are free to endorse candidates in other venues.

The twice-divorced Trump was not the obvious choice for social conservatives at the start of the campaign for the Republican nomination, but since then, many have warmed to the flamboyant New Yorker and polls show that evangelicals overwhelmingly favour him over Democrat Hillary Clinton.

“One of the greatest privileges of my journey has been the time I’ve spent with the evangelical community and people of faith across this nation,” he said Friday.

Describing the US as a divided country, Trump touted faith as the answer.

“It will be our faith in God and his teachings, in each other, that will lead us back to unity,” he said.

The Republican hopeful also pleased the crowd with his call to advance school choice by providing $20 billion in federal money for parents to send their children to private or religious schools.

“My plan will break the government monopoly and make schools compete to provide the best services for our children. The money will follow the student – to the public, private or religious school that is best for them and their family,” Trump added.

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