Tags: north | korea | nuclear | weapons

Former Spanish Prime Minister: N. Korea Shouldn't 'Play With Fire'

Monday, 08 Apr 2013 02:51 PM

By Melanie Batley and Kathleen Walter

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Former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar says North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's recent threats are "totally unacceptable" and that the Chinese Government has a very important responsibility in stopping what he called a "very dangerous moment in Korea."

"This decision of the [North] Korean leadership is a very serious mistake," Aznar said in an interview with NewsmaxTV. "When you play with fire every day the most likely result is you burn in the fire," he added.

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During a wide-ranging interview on foreign policy, Aznar also talked about his role in promoting stability in Israel through a new group he founded, The Friends of Israel Initiative.

He said the group's intent is to defend the state of Israel's right to exist, with secure borders, stability and peace, particularly against neighbors and militant groups he believes have the capability of threatening Israel's future.

"The attitudes of Hamas and Hezbollah [are] very aggressive and for me they both are terrorist organizations and Israel has the right to self-defense," he said, commenting on the clashes this week along the Israel-Gaza border.

"We must express our solidarity with the people of [this] democracy that is suffering very serious threats," he added, noting that like the US and Spain, Israel is a democracy that should be defended by the West.

"If Israel is defeated by its enemies, the consequences for the western world will be, in my view, devastating," he said. He added that if radical fundamentalism prevails over Israel, it would also represent a threat to all western powers.

Aznar's said he believes its important strategically for the West to voice its support loudly, publicly, and repeatedly for Israel's right to exist.

When asked about his view of President Barack Obama's strategy with Iran, Aznar said he believes that while the US sanctions are working, he has no doubt that the regime in Tehran will continue to develop its nuclear program. He called Iran not only a threat to Israel but the rest of the world as well.

Aznar also said he believes the euro currency will survive, but he said the Eurozone must continue to expand and consolidate its financial union.

"Today the Eurozone is an unfinished idea," he said.

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