Seoul: Visiting US Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday confirmed a firm alliance between South Korea and the US against any threats from North Korea.
Kerry, who arrived in Seoul on Sunday afternoon for a two-day visit, said in his introductory remarks during talks with South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se that the two allies "are united firmly in determination to stand up against any threats from North Korea."
The top US diplomat said that North Korea has indicated, with its recent behaviour, "even greater unwillingness to be reasonable and come to the table to talk about denuclearisation," Yonhap News Agency reported.
Kerry met with President Park Geun-hye earlier in the day as she is scheduled to visit Washington in mid-June.
He dismissed concerns about the status of the Seoul-Washington alliance amid Pyongyang's increased military threats.
The alliance, which is pivotal in regional security, is "absolutely stronger than ever," Kerry stressed.
Kerry said the US will remain open for a dialogue with North Korea, but the North is going in the opposite direction.
However, the North falls short of the standards for meaningful talks and is rather "recklessly abandoning" its obligations under UN resolutions, Kerry added.
The US and South Korea are in consultations with other countries over what they can do to punish Pyongyang.
Later in the day, Kerry is slated to visit the US military base in Yongsan and deliver a lecture on cyber-security at Korea University later in the day before heading back home.