North Korea warns Trump: 'We're ready to launch nuclear strike'
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 16, 2017,
Apr 16, 2017, 11:02
North Korea has attempted to launch a missile on its east coast but it has failed, South Korea's military has said.
While much attention is paid to Pyongyang's threats of striking the United States mainland with intercontinental ballistic missiles, South Korea and Japan are the most at risk of North Korean attack.
According to a military official the weapon is "presumed to be a new ICBM " as it is longer than the existing KN-08 or KN-14 missiles.
The failed launch came just one day after Pyongyang hosted a massive military parade to celebrate the anniversary of the birth of the country's founder, the late Kim Il Sung.
The incident occurred a day after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un oversaw an elaborate military parade in the centre of Pyongyang as the world watched for any provocations that risk sparking a conflict with the Trump administration.
The North Korean US-based monitoring service 38 North has said the country's nuclear site is "primed and ready" for a sixth nuclear test. Pence was briefed on the failed launch while he was aboard Air Force Two, reported The New York Times.
North Korea, which never signed the global Chemical Weapons Convention, is believed to have up to 5,000 tons of chemical weapons, according to a South Korean defense white paper, though the North has never acknowledged it.
"North Korea is a problem", Trump told reporters at the White House on Thursday.
North Korea has tried and failed to launch a missile, South Korean media is reporting. "The president has no further comment".
Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to visit the region Sunday with stops in South Korea and Japan.
A U.S. aircraft carrier, the USS Carl Vinson, is heading to waters off Korea in a show of force.
Always high animosity has risen on the Korean Peninsula in recent months, as the United States and South Korea conduct annual war games that North Korea claims are invasion preparation and the North prepared for Saturday's anniversary celebrations. "The situation now is similar to the time before a storm, and this kind of risky situation worth of our attention and we must be alert", Wang, China's foreign minister, said on Friday.
Kim Jong Un has overseen three nuclear tests and a string of missile and rocket launches since taking over after the death of his father, dictator Kim Jong Il, in late 2011.
China, North Korea's sole major ally and benefactor, which nevertheless opposes its weapons programme, has called for talks leading to a peaceful resolution and the denuclearization of the peninsula.
But they come as a reminder that as tensions build again between the USA and North Korea over Pyongyang's.
Another report from Stratfor Enterprises concluded that Kim's regime is capable of striking positions outside of Korea.
Recent satellite imagery suggests the country could conduct another underground nuclear test at any time. This is a change from when China sent then-Chinese State Councilor Dai Bingguo, a seasoned diplomat, as a special envoy to Pyongyang immediately after the North's shelling of Yeonpyeong Island in November 2010, killing two soldiers and two civilians.
"We warn again that if (acts of North Korea) continue into high-level strategic provocation such as a nuclear test or intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) launch, there will be powerful punitive measures which the North Korean regime would find hard to endure".