Saturday, 18 November, 2017

North Korea slams Trump, says he 'begged for nuclear war'

U.S. President Donald Trump meets with South Korean President Moon Jae In at the Blue House in Seoul on Nov. 7.  AP U.S. President Donald Trump meets with South Korean President Moon Jae In at the Blue House in Seoul on Nov. 7. AP
Howard Terry | 14 November, 2017, 00:40

The exercise is taking place while U.S. President Donald Trump is on an Asian tour and presenting a united front with regional leaders.

"Trump, during his visit, laid bare his true nature as destroyer of the world peace and stability and begged for a nuclear war on the Korean peninsula", the statement said. Following his "lunatic remarks" made in September, Trump "made his conceived attempt yet again to alienate our people from the government and keep up rivalry between the DPRK and the global society", the spokesman continued.

"The strike force plans to conduct air defense drills, sea surveillance, replenishments at sea, defensive air combat training, close-in coordinated maneuvers, and other training", said a statement from the Navy's 7th Fleet, which is responsible for monitoring the Pacific including North Korea.

The ongoing war of words has kept several countries on its toes, including the likes of South Korea, Japan, China and Russian Federation.

He directly addressed North Korea in a speech at South Korea's parliament on Wednesday, telling Kim Jong Un: "Do not underestimate us".

The four-day exercise in the western Pacific involves USS Ronald Reagan, USS Nimitz and USS Theodore Roosevelt - as well as seven South Korean vessels, including three destroyers.

The three carriers will be likely together in the drills around Monday, according to a South Korean military official, who didn't want to be named, citing office rules.

A total of seven South Korean navy vessels, including Aegis-equipped warships, will participate in the drill, the statement said, to accompany 14 USA naval warships. The Aegis technology refers to missile tracking and guidance.

The US has been sending its strategic assets, also including long-range bombers, to the region more frequently for patrols or drills amid accelerating North Korean efforts to expand its nuclear weapons program.

Tensions have been running high since North Korea test-fired two intercontinental ballistic missiles in July, conducted its sixth and most powerful nuclear test on September 3 and flew ballistic missiles over Japan on August 29 and September 15.

"The U.S., under my administration, is completely rebuilding its military, and they're spending hundreds of billions of dollars to the newest and finest military equipment anywhere in the world, being built right now". Trump has previously derided North Korean leader Kim Jong Un as "rocket man".

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