North Korea dismissed on Thursday warnings by U.S. President Donald Trump that it would face “fire and fury” if it threatened the United States as a “load of nonsense”, and outlined detailed plans for a missile strike near the Pacific territory of Guam.
North Korea’s apparently rapid progress in developing nuclear weapons and missiles capable of reaching the U.S. mainland has fueled tensions that erupted into a war of words between Washington and Pyongyang this week, unnerving regional powers and global investors.
Trump’s unexpected remarks prompted North Korea to say on Thursday it was finalizing plans to fire four intermediate-range missiles over Japan to land 30-40 km (18-25 miles) from Guam, more than 3,000 km (2,000 miles) to the south.
Guam is home to about 163,000 people and a U.S. military base that includes a submarine squadron, an air base and a Coast Guard group.
“Sound dialogue is not possible with such a guy bereft of reason and only absolute force can work on him,” a report by the North’s state-run KCNA news agency said of Trump.
The army will complete its plans in mid-August, ready for North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s order, KCNA reported, citing General Kim Rak Gyom, commander of the Strategic Force of the Korean People’s Army.