U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, who was announced today as the incoming Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on East Asian and Pacific Affairs, released the following statement on the recent nuclear test carried out in North Korea:
"This recent provocation from North Korea is an unacceptable violation of multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions and must be strongly condemned by all who value peace. If left unchecked, the unprovoked hostility displayed on Tuesday directly threatens international peace and security and weakens the international non-proliferation system. Tuesday's nuclear test is only the most recent act in a long record of reckless and threatening behavior displayed by this regime. It also should serve as a reminder of the ongoing human rights violations being committed by the regime against its own innocent civilians, many of whom are left to starve as their rulers pursue advanced weapons.
"Today's action should serve as a reminder that we live in a dangerous world and that American leadership is vital to addressing challenges such as the threat posed to the United States and our allies by North Korea. As the incoming ranking member of the Subcommittee on East Asian and Pacific Affairs, I was encouraged by statements from China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs in opposition to this provocation. I urge the new leadership in China to follow those statements with meaningful and specific steps to verifiably curb North Korean aggression that threatens the interests of the countries in the region. It is my hope that the Foreign Relations Committee holds a series of hearings as soon as possible to review the Administration's policies concerning peace and stability in the Korean peninsula and the Asia Pacific in general. President Obama, Secretary Kerry and my colleagues in Congress must make it clear that future conduct of this nature is unacceptable."