Trump says military option against North Korea locked, loaded

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The United States is ready with "military solutions" for the North Korea threat, President Donald Trump said Friday morning, promising they are "locked and loaded".

Trump and North Korea have been locked in a war of words for days, beginning with Trump's promise to unleash "fire and fury" on the isolated communist nation, which in July completed its first successful test of an intercontinental ballistic missile.

That prompted a defiant Pyongyang to threaten a missile attack on Guam, a tiny USA territory in the Pacific that is home to a major United States air and naval facilities. And while the USA has the military resources in the region to strike North Korea at short notice, it does not appear to be sending in more military hardware as might be expected if it were preparing for a conflict. Earlier, North Korea's state-run Korean Central News Agency said the US president is "driving the situation on the Korean peninsula to the brink of a nuclear war". Pacific territory of Guam.

But the president's rhetoric appeared to have little effect, with North Korean state media quoting Kim as calling Trump "bereft of reason" and talking a "load of nonsense". Beijing has expressed frustration with both Pyongyang's repeated nuclear and missile tests and with behavior from South Korea and the US, such as military drills, that it sees as increasing tensions. Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said today his government would back the USA if North Korea attacked.

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The tweet is a signal to Pyongyang that it needs to stand down and start the process of giving up its nuclear arms lest it persists on a path on which Secretary of Defense James Mattis promised would destroy North Korea.

Trump said earlier this week Kim was not going to get away with his "horrific" comments and disrespecting America.

"Let's see what he does with Guam. Maybe it wasn't tough enough", Trump said Thursday.

"North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States".

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