Russia and North Korea were among the countries this week using speeches at the United Nations General Assembly to attack U.S. foreign policy and call on President Trump to change tactics on a host of issues.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, known for his fiery rhetoric, used his speech at the United Nations General Assembly to criticize sanctions on Russia and accused the U.S. of meddling in other countries’ affairs — specifically Syria.
In his speech he also took aim at the U.S. decision to pull out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, attacking “belligerent revisionism against the modern system of international law.” He also accused Western powers of using “political blackmail, economic pressure and brute force.”
“The attacks have been launched against the basic principles of the Middle East settlement, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on the Iranian nuclear program, the commitments within the World Trade Organization (WTO) framework, the multilateral climate agreement and many more,” he said.
Trump has been a critic of the WTO, and on Wednesday at a Security Council meeting defended his decision to pull out of the Iran deal — which he called a “horrible, one-sided deal [that] allowed Iran to continue its path toward a [nuclear] bomb and gave the regime a cash lifeline when they needed it the most.”
On Friday, Lavrov also attacked Trump’s decision last year to bomb a Syrian airbase in response to a chemical attack by President Bashar al-Assad’s regime — with Lavrov describing it as “launched under a totally trumped-up pretext” and warned against wars launched under “spurious pretexts.”
Trump on had warned Syria and Russia against an all-out assault on the province of Idlib: “Get the terrorists, but I hope the restraint continues. The world is watching.”
On Saturday North Korea claimed that the regime had not seen a “corresponding response” from the U.S. to North Korean disarmament and that sanctions were signs of mistrust from the U.S.
“Without any trust in the U.S., there will be no confidence in our national security, and under such circumstances there is no way we will unilaterally disarm ourselves first,” Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho said.
He also said that “the perception that sanctions can bring us to our knees is a pipe-dream of the people who are ignorant about us.”
The two countries aren’t the only ones to use the General Assembly to take either explicit or veiled swipes at the U.S.
China and Iran both used their opportunities to criticize the U.S., with Iranian leader Hassan Rouhani on Tuesday accusing Trump of having a “Nazi disposition.”
But President Trump in his speech gave as good as he got. A year after threatening North Korean leader Kim Jong-un that he was prepared to destroy North Korea if it kept up its nuclear ambitions, Trump warned that the U.S. would not allow the Islamic regime to obtain a bomb.
“We cannot allow the world’s leading sponsor of terrorism to possess the planet’s most dangerous weapons,” he said. “We cannot allow a regime that chants ‘Death to America’ and that threatens Israel with annihilation to possess the means to deliver a nuclear warhead to any city on Earth.
“Just can’t do it.”
Fox News’ Ben Evansky and The Associated Press contributed to this report.