If North Korea launches attack, what can we expect

Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis answers questions while speaking at the Defense Innovation Unit Experimental in Mountain View Calif. Mattis says the U.S. will “take out” any North Korean missile it detects

Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis answers questions while speaking at the Defense Innovation Unit Experimental in Mountain View Calif. Mattis says the U.S. will “take out” any North Korean missile it detects

"In the interest of regional stability, he said the USA views with growing urgency the need for China to increase pressure on the North Korean regime", a us military spokesperson told Reuters in a statement regarding the meeting.

After heated exchanges between the US and the North last week, several outlets say Kim pausing strikes near Guam is a step down in tension.

Despite their tone, the comments were seen as an indication that the regime might hold off its plan to conduct "enveloping strikes" toward Gaum by firing four intermediate range ballistic missiles around the waters near the U.S. island.

Last year's report pointedly said the exercise of religious freedom continued to be almost "nonexistent" in North Korea.

The biggest worry for Ponder is not the threat a missile could hit Guam in less than 15 minutes.

State-controlled Korean Central News Agency reported leader Kim Jong-un would "watch a little more the foolish and stupid conduct of the Yankees" before taking action. He added that only Seoul "can make the decision for military action" on the peninsula.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in has been actively pursuing a diplomatic option since he came to power earlier this year - though an initial attempt to restart talks with Pyongyang was rebuffed. But the leader also tempered his recent fiery rhetoric, appearing to step back from the brink in an intensifying war of words between United States and North Korean leaders.

Trump appeared to be referring to Kim's decision to put a hold on launching four missiles into the waters around the Pacific island of Guam, as North Korea had previously threatened.

North Korea's state news agency reportedly said Kim is waiting to see what the USA does next. President Moon has all along been talking about a face-to-face meeting with the North with negotiations.

Speaking to reporters at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, the US President said: "North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States".

Senior Trump administration officials have said that the United States is not interested in regime change, and has no desire to "inflict harm on the long-suffering North Korean people".

"The object of our peaceful pressure campaign is the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula", Mattis and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson wrote in a joint op-ed article published by the Wall Street Journal. Kim Jong has made it clear, time and again that any attack on the North will invite "merciless" retribution.

The US and South Korean militaries begin war games next week at a time of unprecedented tensions with North Korea.

Nauert said on the joint op-ed piece that the two secretaries "believe firmly that diplomacy can solve this; however, we're prepared, as we are in every situation around the globe, to switch to another plan if that is absolutely necessary".

Foreign Minister Wang Yi said in a phone conversation with his Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov, that the two countries should work together to contain tensions and permit no one to "stir up an incident on their doorstep", according to a statement posted on the Chinese foreign ministry's website.

The belligerent rhetoric between Washington and Pyongyang has escalated even more since the United Nations approved a new round of sanctions against the North.

Kim also warned that the US should not test North Korea's self-restraint.

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