Haley warns N. Korea about attacking USA base or testing ICBM

In a phone conversation with Trump yesterday, Chinese President Xi Jinping called for all sides to exercise restraint. He says U.N. Security Council resolutions and sanctions on Pyongyang must be fully implemented.

North Korea has ambitions to build a missile capable of reaching the U.S. mainland and tensions have soared in recent months as it carried out a string of missile tests that sparked tit-for-tat sabre-rattling between it and Washington.

US President Donald Trump personally lobbied UN Security Council members on Monday, telling them they must be prepared to "impose additional and stronger sanctions on North Korea". "However, we will respond to threats to us or our allies accordingly", a spokesperson declared.

"If the U.S. and warmongers run amok with a reckless pre-emptive strike, we will stage the most brutal punishment of a pre-emptive attack in the sky and land as well as at sea and from underwater without any warning or prior notice", said Rodong Sinmun, a North Korean newspaper of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea. He said, "People have put blindfolds on for decades", signaling again that the time for "strategic patience" toward the North is over.

The administration has settled on a strategy emphasizing increased pressure on North Korea with the help of China, rather than trying to overthrow Kim Jong Un's isolated government or use military force. But senior officials have repeatedly said that "all options" remain on the table.

USA representative for North Korea Policy Joseph Yun met Tuesday with his Japanese counterpart Kenji Kanasugi and Kim Hong-kyun of South Korea. Those ties have frayed, but Beijing remains the North's economic lifeline.

The vessel will take part in joint naval drills with the South's forces to "demonstrate Seoul and Washington's strong determination to punish North Korean provocations", the South Korean Navy said in a statement.

"They are at once perilously overestimating their own strength and underestimating the hazards they are brewing for themselves", it said.

South Korea's navy said it was conducting a live-fire exercise with US destroyers on Tuesday in waters west of the Korean peninsula and would soon join the carrier strike group approaching the region.

Tension on the Korean Peninsula was high on the anniversary, with US and South Korean missile destroyers also due to hold a live-fire exercise in the western sea on the North Korean border. The official was not authorized to discuss the ship movement publicly so spoke on condition of anonymity.

"As a close neighbour to the Korean Peninsula, the last thing China wants is to see North Korea fall into such a predicament or an outbreak of war in the region".

The DPRK tended to mark significant dates by displaying its military capability.

Commercial satellite imagery suggests the North has been readying for weeks for an underground atomic explosion, and could conduct one at any time. Alternatively, a long-range missile test could show North Korean progress toward being able to fire a weapon at America. North Korea separately fired what United States officials said were a Scud-type missile and a mid-range missile earlier this month, but the launches were analyzed as failures.

With typical rhetorical flourish, the ministry said North Korea "will react to a total war with an all-out war, a nuclear war with nuclear strikes of its own style and surely win a victory in the death-defying struggle against the US imperialists".

A United States military official described the move as a show of force.

Regardless, North Korea has carried out nuclear and missile tests in defiance of successive rounds of United Nations sanctions. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Joseph Dunford will be among those speaking to the senators.

North Korean soldiers walk in front of bronze statues of North Korea's late founder Kim Il-sung and late leader Kim Jong Il.

  • Leroy Wright