The Latest: NKorea organizing rally against UN sanctions
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump and North Korea (all times local):
North Korean authorities have organized a giant rally Wednesday as a show of support for their rejection of the latest round of U.N. sanctions.
Tens of thousands of people packed Kim Il Sung Square in downtown Pyongyang for the event, which followed a familiar format of speeches from a balcony, with the crowd listening below, standing in organized rows interspersed with placards and slogans.
Kim Ki Nam, member of the Political Bureau and vice chairman of the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea, told the crowd that “the U.S. and its allies have fabricated a sanctions resolution again, taking over the United Nations while picking on our ICBM test launch.”
President Donald Trump is stressing the United States’ nuclear capabilities, saying “there will never be a time that we are not the most powerful nation in the world!” But he added: “Hopefully we will never have to use this power.”
On Twitter Wednesday, Trump said he had pushed to “renovate and modernize our nuclear arsenal.” He then added: “Hopefully we will never have to use this power, but there will never be a time that we are not the most powerful nation in the world!”
The comments come as Trump and North Korea traded escalating threats. Trump’s heated rhetoric comes as his secretary of state seeks to downplay the words.
President Donald Trump says the United States’ nuclear arsenal is “far stronger and more powerful than ever before.”
Trump tweeted Wednesday: “My first order as President was to renovate and modernize our nuclear arsenal. It is now far stronger and more powerful than ever before….”
The tweet came as Trump traded escalating threats with North Korea. Trump on Tuesday threatened “fire and fury” if North Korea made more threats to the U.S. And North Korea’s military said it was examining plans for attacking Guam.
Trump retweeted news coverage about his heated rhetoric Wednesday.
A Republican who’s a leading voice on defense issues says President Donald Trump has “basically drawn a red line” with his strong warning on North Korea.
The North is threatening the United States with the prospect of a nuclear-armed long-range missile, and Sen. Lindsey Graham says Trump isn’t going to just “contain the threat. He’s going to stop the threat.”
The South Carolina lawmaker — a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee — tells CBS’ “This Morning” that war would be “horrific” and he believes “we’re headed that way unless the world can stop North Korea.”
In Graham’s opinion, “the time for talking is running out.”
President Donald Trump is retweeting news coverage about his heated rhetoric against North Korea, even as his secretary of state is downplaying Trump’s words.
On Wednesday morning, Trump retweeted “Fox & Friends” tweets about Trump’s fiery rhetoric. One said “Trump vows U.S. ‘power’ will meet North Korean threat.” Another included a video clip of Trump vowing to respond to North Korean threats with “fire and fury.”
The president’s retweets about his rhetoric Tuesday come as Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was urging calm. Tillerson said Wednesday as he returned from an Asia trip he doesn’t believe there is “any imminent threat.”
Trump and North Korea have been exchanging escalating threats, with the North saying it was examining plans for attacking Guam. But Tillerson told reporters that nothing he’s seen or knows of in the last day dramatically changed the situation.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says he doesn’t believe there is “any imminent threat” from North Korea, including to the U.S. territory of Guam.
Tillerson says that “Americans should sleep well at night.” He says that they should “have no concerns about this particular rhetoric of the last few days.”
Tillerson spoke to reporters Wednesday after President Donald Trump and North Korea traded escalating threats of “fire,” with the North saying it was examining plans for attacking Guam.
He downplayed speculation that the threats move the U.S. closer to a military option. Tillerson says nothing he’s seen or knows of in the last day dramatically changed the situation.
Tillerson spoke to reporters as he flew from Malaysia to Washington, stopping in Guam to refuel.