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U.S. Democratic Party vows to bolster alliance with S. Korea, tackle N.K. nuclear, missile programs

The U.S. Democratic Party has released the final draft of its policy platform ahead of the upcoming presidential convention, vowing to bolster the alliance with South Korea and push back against North Korean aggression.

"North Korea is perhaps the most repressive regime on the planet, run by a sadistic dictator. It has conducted several nuclear tests and is attempting to develop the capability to put a nuclear warhead on a long-range missile that could directly threaten the United States," the platform said.

"Yet Donald Trump praises North Korea's dictator, threatens to abandon our treaty allies, Japan and South Korea, and encourages the proliferation of nuclear weapons in the region. This approach is incoherent and rather than solving a global crisis, would create a new one," it said.

The platform also said that Democrats will "protect America and our allies, press China to restrain North Korea, and sharpen the choices for Pyongyang to compel it to abandon its illegal nuclear and missile programs."

The Korea part in the draft was largely similar to a foreign policy speech that Democratic Party presidential candidate Hillary Clinton delivered last month, highlighting the differences in the values she and Trump attach to American allies.

"From the Asia Pacific to the Indian Ocean, we will deepen our alliances in the region with Australia, Japan, New Zealand, the Philippines, South Korea and Thailand," the platform said. "We will push back against North Korean aggression and press China to play by the rules."

The draft platform is expected to be endorsed by the full 187-member platform committee later this week before being formally adopted when the party holds its presidential convention in Philadelphia later this month to formally select Clinton as its presidential nominee.

On economic issues, the party was critical of free trade and vowed a review of trade deals.

"Over the past three decades, America has signed too many trade deals that have not lived up to the hype. Trade deals often boosted the profits of large corporations, while at the same time failing to protect workers' rights, labor standards, the environment and public health," the draft said.

"Democrats believe we should review agreements negotiated years ago to update them to reflect these principles. Any future trade agreements must make sure that our trading partners cannot undercut American workers by taking shortcuts on labor policy or the environment," it said.

But the party does not have a clear position on whether it supports or rejects the 12-nation Trans Pacific Partnership free trade deal awaiting legislative approval, only saying there is a diversity of views in the party.

Trump has also been highly critical of free trade deals.

In an economic speech last week, the real-estate tycoon vowed to pull out of the TPP if elected president. He also said he would immediately renegotiate NAFTA to get a better deal, and withdraw from the deal unless Canada and Mexico agree to a renegotiation. (Yonhap)

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