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CNMI governor backs Trump's stance on North Korea

12 August 2017

For years, North Korea has claimed Guam is within its missiles' striking distance, making furious statements each time when the US flew powerful bombers from the island's air base to the Korean Peninsula.

Now installed in the White House, Trump issued a new warning to Pyongyang on Thursday that his previous promise to unleash "fire and fury" may not have been strong enough.

President Xi called on "relevant parties" to exercise restraint and avoid words and actions that would exacerbate tension, state TV reported, adding that it was in the interests of both China and the USA to pursue the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula. "They will be met by fire and fury like the world has never seen", Trump said on Wednesday. The U.S., they came here because I think they wanted the land.

North Korea said Wednesday that it was examining operational plans for attacking Guam, an angry reaction to new United Nations sanctions for its intercontinental ballistic missile tests and a USA suggestion about preparations for possible preventive attacks to stop the North's nuclear weapons program.

Meanwhile, Japan says it could shoot down missiles for its U.S. ally if North Korea fires them at Guam. The United States Navy does not typically disclose the exact positions of its warships, but several Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, which are equipped with SM-3s, are permanently based in the western Pacific. Its residents are American citizens by birth.

He says American weapons are locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely.

South Korean Defense Ministry spokesman Col.

The latest report that it has produced a miniaturised nuclear warhead would mean North Korea has passed a key threshold in becoming a fully fledged nuclear power. "North Korea has always threatened other countries".

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"This is extremely getting on the nerves of the infuriated Hwasong artillerymen of the [North Korean army], it added".

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.

"Sound dialogue is not possible with such a guy bereft of reason and only absolute force can work on him", a report by the North's state-run KCNA news agency said of Trump.

But South Korean defense officials said after the May launch that they estimated Pukguksong-2's range to be around 2,000 kilometers (1,242 miles), which would be enough to strike US bases in Japan but come short of reaching Guam.

Ms. Choo also berated North Korea, calling its plan to target Guam "a delusion that would only bring about its self-destruction".

The American military presence on Guam consists of two bases - Andersen Air Force Base in the north and Naval Base Guam in the south - which are home to 7,000 USA troops. They are both managed under Joint Base Marianas. The U.S., in turn, has heavily fortified Guam - in part to keep an eye on North Korea. "I think they probably have 60 missiles with nuclear weapons on them", he says.

Despite its size, it plays an outsized role in USA military strategy in the Pacific.

The United States and its allies have two primary missile defense options to intercept a missile between North Korea and Guam.

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He saw North Korea's statement as a warning to Washington that its missiles could reach targets in the region, rather than one of an actual attack. The military would complete the Guam plan by mid-August and submit it to Kim Jong-Un for consideration, he said.

The nationalistic Global Times tabloid said on Friday in an editorial that Washington and Pyongyang were playing a "reckless game" that could lead to "miscalculations and a strategic war".

South Korea's emphasis on transparency on Friday followed a series of statements opposing an armed conflict with the North.

The heated exchanges underscored a risky turn in the long-running standoff with Pyongyang after it test-fired two ICBMs last month.

Over the past two years, the North has conducted dozens of missile tests of various designs.

Missile defense is an attractive but tricky strategy in dealing with missile threats.

Of course, if the USA determines that North Korea has launched a missile targeting the U.S., the President would have to decide whether to retaliate.

Japan, a key USA ally, is also a potential target of North Korean aggression.

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CNMI governor backs Trump's stance on North Korea