Mattis Warns of "Massive Military Response" to North Korea Threats

Mattis Warns of

United States president Donald Trump on Sunday called North Korea a "great threat and embarrassment" to China and warned that "appeasement" won't work with Pyongyang.

The exercises included the launch of the Hyunmoo ballistic missile and projectiles fired by F-15 fighter jets, which accurately hit the designated targets in the Sea of Japan, according to the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS), Efe news reported.

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said that, while North Korea was not a puppet state of China, Beijing needed to do more to pressure its neighbor.

President Donald Trump threatened to increase economic sanctions and halt trade with any nation doing business with North Korea, and his defense chief said the USA has "many military options" after the regime said it successfully tested a hydrogen bomb with "unprecedentedly big power".

It flew a Hwasong-12 over northern Japan last week, the first such overflight by a missile capable of carrying nukes, in a launch Kim described as a "meaningful prelude" to containing Guam, the home of major USA military facilities, and vowed to launch more ballistic missile tests targeting the Pacific.

North Korea in July had carried out two intercontinental ballistic missile launches that apparently brought much of the United States mainland into range. "But as I said, we have many options to do so".

South Korea's military says it conducted a live-fire exercise simulating an attack on North Korea's nuclear test site to "strongly warn" Pyongyang over the latest nuclear test. More drills were being prepared with USA forces in the South, it said.

Hours before, North Korean state news agency KCNA released pictures showing Kim inspecting a silver, hourglass-shaped warhead during a visit to the North's nuclear weapons institute. What appeared to be the nose cone of a missile could also be seen in one photo, and another showed a diagram on the wall behind Kim of a bomb mounted inside a cone.

His handling of Pyongyang's latest nuclear test reflected a more traditional approach to crisis management, which USA officials said illustrated the influence of Mattis and new White House chief of staff, retired Marine Corps General John Kelly. The meeting was called by the US, France, the United Kingdom, Japan and South Korea, according to the US mission to the UN.

In a series of tweets on Sunday, Trump appeared to rebuke South Korea for that approach.

Trump has previously vowed to stop North Korea developing nuclear weapons and said he would unleash "fire and fury" if it threatened US territory.

Trump also suggested putting more pressure on China, the North's patron for many decades and a vital US trading partner, in hopes of persuading Beijing to exert more effective leverage on its neighbor. Such a halt would be radical.

North Korea gets the bulk of its oil from China, its main ally and trading partner, and a lesser amount from Russian Federation. The North recently requested a Security Council meeting about the war games. "We should keep denuclearization as a long-term aspiration, but recognize privately that it's unachievable anytime soon".

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