Signs of Diplomacy Appear as North Korea Delays Guam Missile Test

Lester Mason
August 15, 2017

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un reviewed his military's plans to rain "an enveloping fire" around the US territory of Guam - but opted not to fire missiles at this time, according to state media.

As reported by Reuters, Kim made his first public appearance in almost two weeks, in which he was seen inspecting the command of his army.

The threat to fire four missiles within 25 miles of Guam came last week and led to an escalation of threats between North Korea and Trump. Kim said he will give order for the missile test if the United States continues its "extremely risky actions" on the Korean Peninsula.

"The government, putting everything on the line, will block war by all means", he added.

"The bottom line is, we will defend the country from an attack; for us (U.S. military) that is war", Mattis said.

President Trump has used confrontational rhetoric emphasizing US willingness to use force if necessary to prevent the Kim government from developing a long-range nuclear missile capable of hitting the USA mainland, but he has also indicated support for more direct talks. The United States and South Korea plan next week, however, to start annual defensive military drills that the North claims are preparation for invasion.

On Friday, US President Donald Trump doubled down on his statement that he would unleash "fire and fury like the world has never seen" if Pyongyang continued its threats, saying in a tweet that "military solutions" were "locked and loaded" for use against North Korea.

Residents of the U.S. Pacific island territory of Guam face a missile threat from North Korea.

"If South Korea really wants no war on the Korean Peninsula, it should try to stop this military exercise".

Moon, in a televised speech Tuesday on the anniversary of the end of World War II and the Korean Peninsula's liberation from Japanese colonial rule, said that Seoul and Washington agree that the crisis over the North's nuclear program should "absolutely be solved peacefully", and that no USA military action on the Korean Peninsula could be taken without Seoul's consent.

The plans are based on the Hwasong-12, a new missile the country successfully flight-tested for the first time in May.

"It's [North Korea's] aligning the United Nations in very serious sanctions, and I would just tell you that it did not happen by accident", Mattis said, of the 15-0 unanimous U.N. Security Council vote to impose economic sanctions on North Korea and stop its missile production. The liquid-fuel missile is created to be fired from road mobile launchers and has been previously described by North Korea as built for attacking Alaska and Hawaii.

Trump, in turn, would consult with America's allies.

The North Korean dictator hasn't been seen for more than two weeks, since he was pictured by state media on July 28 celebrating the test launch of a Hwasong-14 intercontinental ballistic missile. If the "planned fire of power demonstration" is carried out because of USA recklessness, Kim said it will be "the most delightful historic moment when the Hwasong artillerymen will wring the windpipes of the Yankees and point daggers at their necks", the news agency reported.

In a statement released last week by the North Korea's KCNA media channel, the dictatorship vowed to mercilessly wipe out the provocateurs making desperate efforts to "stifle" their leader, Kim Jong-un. People familiar with the contacts who spoke on condition of anonymity say those discussions have addressed deteriorating relations and issues including three Americans still detained in the North.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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