Korean missile test fails hours after UN meeting on nukes

Henrietta Brewer
April 30, 2017

On Wednesday, the White House will hold a briefing on the North Korea situation for all 100 USA senators.

"If it flies, it will die", Adm. Harry Harris Jr., told Congress.

The Pentagon needs to consider deploying new anti-ballistic missile systems and a defensive radar to Hawaii to protect against a growing threat from North Korea, the top US military officer in the Pacific told Congress on Wednesday.

Seoul says North Korea conducted huge live-fire drills Tuesday.

China wants North Korea to end its nuclear weapons program, but has opposed unilateral sanctions imposed without a United Nations mandate. The USS Carl Vinson aircraft supercarrier also is headed toward the peninsula for an exercise with South Korea.

Though Japan would have virtually no defense against a surprise nuclear attack, experts contacted by Business Insider maintain that a first strike from North Korea seems incredibly unlikely, as the Kim regime would face quick retaliation from a much more certain nuclear power, the US.

While the U.S.is calling for global action, it says the onus is on China to ramp up pressure on North Korea, its main trading partner and source of food and fuel aid.

But Harris said that North Korea remains "the most immediate threat" to USA security, as they "vigorously" pursue strikes and launches meant to target Australia, South Korea, and the U.S.

"I'm not a student of the Cuban missile crisis", Harris said. "One of these days soon, he will succeed".

He condemned "in the strongest terms" North Korea's repeated defiance of U.N. Security Council demands to halt its nuclear and missile programs.

All 100 senators were invited and transported in buses for the unprecedented classified briefing at the White House.

On April 25, the Associated Press reported that the USA carrier group was "conducting a joint exercise with Japan's Air Self Defense Forces in waters south of Japan".

After meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Trump praised China's willingness to help with North Korea, and expressed optimism that they would do more to deter Kim Jong-Un from holding additional tests.

The unit her bill would seek to create, "would seek to ensure that the US government is collecting intelligence on North Korea's nuclear weapons program, missile programs, weapon sales, and other activities that violate United Nations sanctions", she continued.

"China has a very, very important role to play" to persuade North Korea to give up its nuclear ambitions, Joseph Yun, the US special representative for North Korea policy, told reporters in Tokyo.

The moves to set up THAAD within this year have angered not only North Korea, but also China, the country that the Trump administration hopes to work with to rid the North of nuclear weapons.

With tensions high on the Korean Peninsula some fear a misstep or miscalculation by either the United States or North Korea could lead to armed conflict - potentially one that could even go nuclear.

China banned imports of North Korean coal in February, cutting off its most important export, and Chinese media this month raised the possibility of restricting oil shipments to the North if it unleashed more provocations.

China "confirmed to us that they had requested the regime conduct no further nuclear test", Tillerson said on Fox News Channel.

Unspecified parts of the THAAD defence system also were installed.

The South's Yonhap News Agency reported that the exercises were North Korea's largest to date, involving some 300 or 400 pieces of artillery, but the joint chiefs did not confirm the number. Russian Federation also sees the system's powerful radars as a security threat. China, which has grown increasingly frustrated with North Korea, its ally, and Russian Federation see the system's powerful radars as a security threat.

"(North Korea) will use that as their excuse to continue to build their nuclear program, so there are consequences and real costs to our policies and our actions", Gabbard said.

Pyongyang must suspend its nuclear activities, he said, but "on the other side, the large-scale military manoeuvrs in Korean waters should be halted".

The launch ratchets up tensions on the Korean peninsula, with Washington and Pyongyang locked in an ever-tighter spiral of threat, counter-threat and escalating military preparedness.

Geng said "China will firmly be taking necessary measures to defend our own interests" but offered no details.

Tillerson said in an interview Thursday that Beijing has threatened to impose unilateral sanctions on North Korea if it conducts further nuclear tests.

Other reports by iNewsToday