The South Korean official said member states of ARF reaffirmed it shared the common goal of the global communities to “achieve a complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of North Korea in a peaceful manner”.
Residents of the tiny territory – just 12 miles at its widest point and circled with handsome beaches – find themselves again caught in the middle of a war of words as a volley of hostile rhetoric was launched between North Korea and the United States, including pointed threats of nuclear action.
The problem, as clearly demonstrated during the last several chaotic days, is that North Korea doesn’t want to talk.
But last week, as Pyongyang traded increasingly angry words with the U.S., there are worries of a clash along the heavily militarised frontier dividing the two Koreas.
Mr. Moon’s office did not reveal what the step-by-step measures were or whether the South would be informed in advance should the United States, for instance, attempt a surgical strike at a North Korean missile site – an action that analysts say could escalate into an armed conflict. US allies Japan and South Korea quickly vowed a strong reaction if the North were to follow through.
Continuing a war of words with Kim Jong Un’s communist regime, US President Donald Trump ratcheted up his rhetoric on Thursday saying a strike on the American territory of Guam would unleash “an event the likes of which nobody’s seen before”.
“If North Korea ignores our warning and carries out this provocation, it will face strong and firm punishment from our military and the South Korea-U.S. alliance”.
The naval base dates to 1898, when the USA took over Guam from Spain after the Spanish-American War.
The U.S. keeps a Naval base and Coast Guard station in the south, and an Air Force base in the north that saw heavy use during the Vietnam War.
There are two major bases on Guam: Andersen Air Force Base in the north and Naval Base Guam in the south.
North Korea ramped up the rhetoric in a new statement issued Wednesday, sourced to a spokesman for the General Staff of the Korean People’s Army (KPA), which said a “preemptive strike is no longer the monopoly of the U.S.”. “We’re just trying not to think about it too much”.
“If the US and South Korea carry out strikes and try to overthrow the North Korean regime and change the political pattern of the Korean Peninsula, China will prevent them from doing so”.
Now, South Korea’s media are leading calls for a change of tack.
Guam is also protected by the THAAD missile defense system.
Chinese government-backed scholars said Beijing is deeply concerned about the latest statements from Trump and North Korea.
“Unfortunately, the rhetoric in Washington and Pyongyang is now starting to go over the top”, Lavrov said on live state television at a forum for Russian students. In violation of that agreement as well as U.N. Security Council resolutions, North Korea has conducted five nuclear tests.
He told CNN that while there was some fear, people were used to living with North Korean posturing.
“The shorter-range missile that can reach South Korea and Japan can accommodate larger nuclear warhead payloads, ” he said.
The territory has struggled economically and is known to investors for its municipal bonds, which have so far been relatively unaffected by the saber rattling between Trump and Kim.
That’s still a fraction of the size of “the mother of all bombs”, which the United States dropped on a suspected Islamic State target in Afghanistan in April.