Central Intelligence Agency chief: No indication of imminent nuclear war with N. Korea

N. Korea ponders striking US base in Guam after Trump threatens Pyongyang with ‘fire & fury

But he rejected talk of the USA being on the "cusp of nuclear war".

Some analysts suggested Mr Kim's comments opened a possible path to de-escalating a growing crisis fuelled by bellicose words between US President Donald Trump and the North Korean leadership.

Trump warned last week that North Korea would be met with "fire and fury" if it continued to threaten his country.

"An attack from North Korea is not something that is imminent". The two envoys reportedly first engaged in negotiating the release of USA college student Otto Warmbier two months ago.

And Secretary of State Rex Tillerson seemed to drop a key precondition set by former President Barack Obama that Pyongyang first commit to denuclearization before any talks can occur. However, now it is standing before a deteriorating reality and security instability due to North Korea.

North Korea emphasized that Pyongyang should be treated with the respect it deserves for being a nuclear power: "The US carried out a long list of injustices against North Korea while presenting itself as the "only superpower" in the world".

"North Korea just released a Canadian citizen when a security adviser to the Canadian prime minister visited Pyongyang".

North Korea's "grave threat" demands a "concerted effort" from the United States and its worldwide allies, a top American security official said today as he warned that the two countries were closer to war than they were a decade ago.

"Only the Republic of Korea can make the decision for military action on the Korean Peninsula".

The launch location seen in the map appeared to be in the vicinity of Sinpo, the coastal city that hosts North Korea's submarine base, said military expert Kim Dong Yub from Kyungnam University's Institute of Far Eastern Studies in Seoul.

"Despite the ups and downs, the North Korea nuclear issue must be resolved peacefully", he said.

"The United States military is always locked and loaded", he said. Beijing is North Korea's biggest economic partner and source of aid.

"There is a growing recognition inside the Moon Jae-in government that South Korea's independent capability to dictate the US security conditions on the Korean Peninsula is severely limited", said the Yonsei University analyst Bong Young-shik.

Some analysts said Mr Kim was seeking a similar quid-pro-quo this time around, using the Guam missile threat as leverage.

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