USA warns North Korea to avoid destruction of its people

North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un inspecting the test-fire of the intercontinental ballistic missile Hwasong-14

Defense Secretary James Mattis on Wednesday warned North Korea to stop its pursuit of nuclear weapons or face the end of Pyongyang's regime and "the destruction of its people".

Mattis said in a statement that Trump was informed of the growing threat that North Korea poses in December before he took office, and ordered the Pentagon to emphasise ballistic missile defence and nuclear weapons that pose a deterrent to other countries using them.

"The DPRK should cease any consideration of actions that would lead to the end of its regime and the destruction of its people", Mattis said in a statement.

"North Korea best not make any more threats to the US". They evoked President Harry Truman's announcement of the U.S. atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima, Japan, in 1945, in which he warned of "a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth".

Mattis' words, some of the strongest he has issued on North Korea, followed incendiary comments from US President Donald Trump who said that threats to the US from Pyongyang would be met with "fire and fury".

"The DPRK regime's actions will continue to be grossly overmatched by ours and would lose any arms race or conflict it initiates", he added.

Congressman Dan Kildee of MI was in South Korea wehn the North Korean regime tested another missile.

He also had a stern warning directly to the rogue nation's dictator, Kim Jong Un.

"I think Americans should sleep well at night, have no concerns about this particular rhetoric of the last few days", Tillerson said.

DPRK stands for Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the official name of North Korea. On Saturday, for example, members of the U.N. Security Council approved new economic sanctions on the regime.

Guam is a USA territory in the western Pacific that is home to a key Air Force base.

Mattis has previously testified before the House Appropriations Committee that a fight with North Korea would be "more serious in terms of human suffering" than anything since the original Korean War ended in 1953.

President Trump on Wednesday declared the U.S. nuclear arsenal "far stronger and more powerful than ever before" even as his top diplomat was working to calm the North Korea crisis and insisting there wasn't "any imminent threat".

Tens of thousands of U.S. troops remain stationed in South Korea and in nearby Japan, the only country to have been attacked with nuclear weapons.

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