A US-hosted meeting of countries that backed South Korea during the 1950-53 Korea War also vowed to support renewed dialogue between the two Koreas.
An advocate for North Korean refugees outlines an alternative approach to political change and regional peace in Korea.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told US media it was too early to tell if the inter-Korea meeting could open the way for future talks involving the US.
After a year dominated by fiery rhetoric and escalating tensions over North Korea’s nuclear weapons programme, Kim used his televised New Year’s Day speech to declare North Korea “a peace-loving and responsible nuclear power”.
The two leaders discussed working together to resolve the very dangerous situation in North Korea.
The White House said Wednesday that no negotiations could be held with North Korea until it improves its behaviour.
Reining in North Korea’s nuclear ambitions will top South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s agenda in Beijing during a visit this week.
The risk of nuclear war is at an all-time high, according to Former US Secretary of Defense William Perry and expert Scott Sagan.
North Korea also said that the UN envoy acknowledged the negative impact of sanctions on humanitarian aid to North Korea.
North Korea’s foreign ministry blamed the drills and “confrontational warmongering” by US officials for making war inevitable.
The missile test, North Korea’s first since mid-September, came a week after US President Donald Trump put the country back on a US list of countries it says support terrorism, allowing it to impose more sanctions.
The Republican president, who has traded personal insults with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un but has not ruled out talks, said the Treasury Department will announce additional sanctions against North Korea on Tuesday.
Washington-based 38 North, a North Korea monitoring project, cited images taken on November 5 showing activity at North Korea’s Sinpo South Shipyard.
China has repeatedly pushed for a diplomatic solution to the nuclear crisis, but in recent months has had only limited high-level exchanges with North Korea.
Donald Trump was speaking alongside Xi Jinping in the Chinese capital to announce the signing of about $250 billion in commercial deals between US and Chinese firms.
Trump used some of his toughest language yet against North Korea in a wide-ranging address that lodged specific accusations of chilling human rights abuses against Pyongyang.
The sanctions will freeze the assets of nine organisations and 26 individuals, chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news conference.
The move, detected by South Korean and US intelligence agencies has sparked concerns of the North stepping up its provocative actions.
After Mexico, Peru has followed suit and expelled the North Korean ambassador over the country’s defiance to end its nuclear program.