President Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in pledged on Thursday to stop North Korea from obtaining nuclear weapons "at any cost," the White House said.
Trump "spoke today with President Moon Jae-in of the Republic of Korea for the second time since North Korea launched an intercontinental ballistic missile on November 28," the White House said in a statement on Thursday.
"The two leaders discussed next steps to respond to this most recent provocation by North Korea, including how to bring maximum pressure to bear on the regime," the White House said. "The presidents reiterated their strong commitment to enhancing the alliance’s deterrence and defense capabilities."
"Both leaders reaffirmed their strong commitment to compelling North Korea to return to the path of denuclearization at any cost," the White House said of Trump's call with Moon. "President Trump committed to sending a high-level delegation to the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics."
Trump traveled to South Korea this month and laid out a plan for countering Pyongyang's aggression, which included the possibility of settling the situation with talks should North Korea's dictator, Kim Jong Un, cease his threats against the U.S.
However, the launch of a ballistic missile on Monday shattered that idea and raised questions about whether the punishing economic sanctions imposed by the international community would prove effective in the long run.
While Trump has declined to rule out a military strike on North Korea, Moon and other leaders in the region have warned against this option given the likelihood that thousands of civilian casualties in South Korea and Japan would occur if the U.S. launched an attack on North Korea.