Published: Wed, September 20, 2017
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

United States said to weigh shooting down all North Korean missiles

United States said to weigh shooting down all North Korean missiles

SEOUL-South Korea's President Moon Jae-in said on Wednesday the country is pushing to ensure security at next year's Pyeongchang Winter Olympics amid rising tensions over North Korea's nuclear weapons programs.

The American military is said to be considering shooting down North Korean missile - even if they do not pose a direct threat.

It's hard to understand what the Pentagon could do to stop a North Korean nuclear program or take out its leader, Kim Jong Un, while preventing Pyongyang from fighting back.

The senator will also be meeting with U.S. defence secretary James Mattis on Thursday to discuss issues relating to North Korea.

"I will not go into details", he said.

President Donald Trump in a speech to the United Nations on Tuesday threatened to "totally destroy North Korea" if Pyongyang didn't back down on its nuclear provocations.

North Korea launched an intermediate-range ballistic missile over Japan on Friday in protest against tough new sanctions imposed last week by the UN Security Council after Pyongyang conducted its sixth, and most powerful, nuclear test on September 3.

Recent testing by North Korea has revealed its ability to strike parts of North America with a missile, possibly one equipped with a nuclear warhead.

On Sunday, US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said that the Security Council had run out of options on containing North Korea's nuclear program, and that the matter might be handed over to the Pentagon. Whenever media personnel would ask him about Trump's Twitter usage and the nicknames, the former deputy assistant said he'd reply, "Really?"

The situation with Japan is more complex, but Tokyo views North Korea as sufficiently threatening that a war would nearly certainly incur some kind of intervention, if not necessarily in direct support of RoK forces.

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While Russian officials were initially excited about Trump's readiness to overturn the global order, a promised detente with Russia has failed to materialize while bellicose rhetoric against Russian partners like North Korea and Iran has stepped up. Meanwhile, White House aides who have said that diplomacy is the preferred U.S. option are talking tough - escalating their rhetoric as Trump debuts at the United Nations General Assembly.

North Korea has reacted angrily to fresh United Nations sanctions, saying via its official news agency that they were "strangling and suffocating" the country and its civilian population.

Lavrov said Russia's position on the issue is "completely identical" to China's.

The North Korean regime justifies its military ambitions as a strong need to protect itself from the US.

"You have to put North Korea in a situation where the leadership has to decide between the continuous pursuit of nuclear weapons and missiles, and its survival".

The Trump administration has imposed economic sanctions on Venezuela in response to what USA officials describe as that country's slide toward dictatorship.

She added that the European Union would look at an "appropriate response in close consultation with key partners and in line with UN Security Council deliberations".

The bottom line, he said, is that if the missiles were a threat to Guam or Japan, "that would elicit a different response from us".

Washington pledged to not attack Pyongyang, and all six parties, including Russia, China, Japan and South Korea, agreed to pursue a long-term peace regime on the peninsula.

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