On Tuesday, North Korea State Media warned that the government of North Korea was ready to launch a “nuclear attack on the United States at any sign of U.S. aggression.”
North Korea’s official Rodong Sinmun newspaper said the country was prepared to respond to any aggression by the United States.
“Our revolutionary strong army is keenly watching every move by enemy elements with our nuclear sight focused on the U.S. invasionary bases not only in South Korea and the Pacific operation theatre but also in the U.S. mainland,” it said.
Tension have escalated on the Korean Peninsula amid numerous threats by North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un to use nuclear weapons on the United States. Earlier in the month, North Korea tested a powerful new rocket engine which experts believe could be used to fire an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of hitting the west coast of the United States.
With concerns rising that North Korea may soon conduct a sixth nuclear test, the Pentagon has confirmed that the San Diego-based Carl Vinson Strike Group has been rerouted and was on the move towards the Korean peninsula.
We are sending an armada. Very powerful,” President Trump told Fox Business Network. “We have submarines. Very powerful. Far more powerful than the aircraft carrier. That I can tell you.”
Cmdr. Dave Benham, a spokesman for the command, called the strategy of diverting the supercarrier and its guided-missile escorts north a “prudent measure to maintain readiness and presence” in the volatile western Pacific.
“Third Fleet ships operate forward with a purpose: to safeguard U.S. interests in the Western Pacific,” Benham continued. “The number one threat in the region continues to be North Korea, due to its reckless, irresponsible, and destabilizing program of missile tests and pursuit of a nuclear weapons capability.”
President Trump’s national security adviser, Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster said on Fox News Sunday:
“This is a rogue regime that is now a nuclear-capable regime,” he said. The president has asked to be prepared to give him a full range of options to remove that threat to the American people and to our allies and partners in the region.”
The strike group heading toward Korea includes the nuclear-powered flagship aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson, two destroyers and a cruiser. While the Pentagon would not confirm the strike group included submarines, President Trump seemed to suggest that they were included in the show of force.
U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis attempted to play down the deployment, saying it was not tied to a specific event but a matter of prudence.
“She is just on her way up there because that is where we thought it was most prudent to have her at this time,” he said at a Pentagon news conference.
Trump urges China to Take Action on North Korea; says if they don’t “we will solve the problem without them!”
North Korea is looking for trouble. If China decides to help, that would be great. If not, we will solve the problem without them! U.S.A.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 11, 2017
China’s U.N. ambassador, Liu Jieyi, called the Korean situation “tense” and repeated China’s call for a return to diplomatics talks with North Korea.
“We believe that it is highly important to move toward denuclearization, to maintain peace and stability, and it’s time that different sides sit down to talk about achieving these objectives,” he told Reuters.
South Korean acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn warned of “greater provocations” by North Korea.
“It is possible the North may wage greater provocations such as a nuclear test timed with various anniversaries including the Supreme People’s Assembly,” said Hwang
Hwang ordered the South Korean military to intensify surveillance and to ensure close communication with the United States.