U.S. mulls shooting down North Korean missiles that don't pose direct threat

Cesar Mills
September 23, 2017

"As part of measures to prepare for emergencies, we will today deploy a PAC-3 unit" to a base of the nation's Ground Self-Defense Force in the southern tip of Hokkaido, Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera told reporters.

The United States has "many" military options against North Korea, including some that don't put Seoul at risk, Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said Monday. The city of Seoul, South Korea, home to 25 million, is well within artillery range of the North, which would likely use conventional artillery munitions and chemical weapons.

"We discussed the option, but that's all".

He added, "We believe that all relevant nations can go back to the principles and spirit of the joint statement and look for a solution to the nuclear issue on the peninsula". "I want to say", he said.

But concerns over Kim's missile program have increased after the tyrant threatened to shoot a rocket at Guam, a U.S. territory in the Pacific, just 2,100 miles away from North Korea.

Mattis discussed several aspects of the North Korea crisis in an impromptu exchange with reporters at the Pentagon, including the effect of worldwide economic sanctions and diplomatic pressure on North Korea.

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He was asked why the US, which has spent tens of billions of dollars on missile defense programs in recent decades, has not tried to intercept North Korea's rockets as they demonstrate an increasingly sophisticated missile capability.

The US would focus on "outcomes, not ideologies", and wanted to "work towards common goals with countries, not to dictate to them how to live, and not to dictate to them what kind of system of government they should have", the official said.

The agreement was violated in 2006, when North Korea conducted its first nuclear test.

Tensions flared when North Korea tested what it termed a hydrogen bomb many times more powerful than its previous device.

North Korea launched a missile over Japan on Friday, its second in the past three weeks, and conducted its sixth and by far most powerful nuclear test on September 3, in defiance of worldwide pressure. It was the country's longest-ever test flight of a ballistic missile.

In his remarks Monday, Mattis made clear that the US and Japan are prepared for future missile threats. "So they aim for the middle of the Pacific Ocean".

Other reports by GizPress

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