North Korea quiet amid expectation of missile follow-up

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The USS Michigan, which has made a port call in Busan, is a nuclear-powered submarine A US submarine has arrived in South Korea, amid worries of another North Korean missile or nuclear test.

"If you do this kind of ratcheting (up) of rhetorical tensions but also sending military hardware into the region, if you do that absent of any kind of offramp or door or window for the North Koreans to consider walking through and reengaging in any sort of discussions, bad things are going to happen", he added.

South Korea said in a statement Wednesday that unspecified parts of THAAD were installed.

The main political event to mark the anniversary apparently was a "national meeting" held the day before, when thousands of senior military and civilian officials gathered at the People's Palace of Culture in Pyongyang.

"You can see he's starting to get very paranoid... and we need to keep the pressure up".

Kim did not attend. It was not known how he is marking Tuesday's anniversary.

The three envoys held talks in Tokyo on Tuesday as North Korea marked the anniversary of its military amid speculation it might carry out another nuclear or missile test.

North Korean soldiers walk in front of bronze statues of North Korea's late founder Kim Il-sung and late leader Kim Jong Il.

The unprecedented meeting in a building adjacent to the White House reflected the increased American alarm over North Korea's progress in developing a nuclear-tipped missile that could strike the USA mainland.

Joseph Yun, US Special Representative on North Korea policy, said he discussed American policy to "enhance pressure" on the North "because we really do not believe that North Korea is ready to engage us towards denuclearisation". This indicated that North Korea was developing technologies to "cold-launch" ICBMs, ejecting them from the launch tubes before they ignite in midair, which would prevent its limited number of ICBM-capable launcher trucks from being damaged and also allow the missiles to be fired from silos.

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United States defence leaders and other top officials are to give a classified briefing on North Korea to all senators in an unusual meeting at the White House later Wednesday. The Xi-Trump call on Monday morning Beijing time was the second time the two leaders have spoken by telephone since meeting in Florida earlier this month. The administration has settled on a strategy emphasizing increased pressure on North Korea with the help of China, rather than trying to overthrow Kim Jong Un's isolated government or use military force. "The North Korean nuclear and missile problem is an extremely serious security threat to not only the worldwide community but also our country", the Japanese leader told reporters in Tokyo afterward.

"This is a real threat to the world, whether we want to talk about it or not".

"We agreed to strongly demand that North Korea, which is repeating its provocation, show restraint", Abe told reporters.

North Korea staged a massive live-firing drill on Tuesday (25 April) with its leader Kim Jong-un presumably overseeing the event.

North Korea says it's already halfway there.

The military build-up on both sides comes amid heightened tensions over North Korea's nuclear and missile programs, and warnings from the Trump administration that "all options are on the table" for dealing with the regime in Pyongyang.

Adding to the tensions, North Korea detained a United States citizen on Saturday, bringing the number of Americans being held there to three. The 58-year old taught accounting for a month at the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology.

Kim Jong-un is showing no sign of backing down after refusing to stop nuclear weapons production and vowing to reduce the U.S. "to ash".

In a statement from the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff, South Korea said it was monitoring the situation and remained "firmly prepared".