President Trump's Administration is talking tough on North Korea, as Vice President Mike Pence visits the region and the hermit state attempted a missile launch early Sunday.
U.S. Vice President Mike Pence arrives at the border village of Panmunjom in the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) which has separated the two Koreas since the Korean War, South Korea, Monday, April 17, 2017.
Keeping up the verbal volleying, North Korea's deputy U.N. ambassador accused the United States of turning the Korean peninsula into "the world's biggest hotspot" and creating "a unsafe situation in which a thermonuclear war may break out at any moment".
He reiterated United States support for South Korea, telling acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn: "We are with you 100%".
According to the Pyongyang-based Korean Central News Agency, North Korea is actively developing the Pukguksong-2 missile with multiple homing warheads, which guarantees the overcoming of the THAAD shield.
Pyongyang is seeking to develop a long-range missile capable of hitting the USA mainland with a nuclear warhead, and has so far staged five nuclear tests, two of them previous year.
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It test-fired a missile on Sunday that exploded within seconds of its launch, following a grand military parade on Sunday.
"Let me assure you that under President Trump's leadership our resolve has never been stronger, our commitment to this historic alliance with the courageous people of South Korea has never been stronger and with your help and God's help freedom will ever prevail on this peninsula", he said.
Pence will try to steer clear of South Korea's tumultuous domestic politics ahead of elections next month.
The BBCreported Han also said North Korea believed its nuclear weapons protect it from the threat of military action by the United States.
The United States, its allies and China are working on a range of responses to North Korea's latest failed ballistic missile test, Trump's national security adviser said on Sunday, citing what he called an worldwide consensus to act.
In Washington, Mr Trump was asked if he had a message for North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
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The risks are great: former Defense Secetary William J. Perrywarned that the primary danger is that North Korea "might overplay its hand and provoke a military response from South Korea", which could quickly expand into a larger conventional war, involving the United States and the nearly 30,000 troops based in South Korea. The high-profile failure came as the North tried to showcase its nuclear and missile capabilities around the birth anniversary of the North's late founder and as a US aircraft carrier neared the Korean Peninsula. And, of course, North Korea has the nuclear weapons (whose parts are not supplied by any one source) to back that up.
President Donald Trump will not allow North Korea to threaten any US allies or its partners in the region, US Department of State Acting Assistant Secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Susan Thornton said in a press briefing on Monday.
China, historically Pyongyang's sole major ally, has reiterated its call for North Korea to stop all tests, and has also called for a peaceful solution.
However, earlier this month, during an interview with Financial Times, Trump said the U.S.is prepared to act alone - without China, if necessary - in order to deal with Kim's regime. While interest in North Korea spikes immediately after a missile launch, within hours internet search traffic is again dominated by TV comedy shows, taxes and real estate.
The nuclear-armed state is under United Nations sanctions over its weapons programmes.
Mr Pence is visiting South Korea, Japan, Indonesia and Australia on a 10-day Asia tour.
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That includes the unveiling of a brand new bronze statue, which will be permanently displayed outside Dodger Stadium. Here's a sampling of the many ways in which teams and players paid tribute to the great Jackie Robinson on Saturday.
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