War of words ratchets up between Kim and Trump


Trump's executive order expanded the Treasury Department's ability to target anyone conducting significant trade in goods, services or technology with North Korea, and to ban them from interacting with the US financial system. It was characterized as a demonstration of "resolve".

Some analysts saw a clear sign that North Korea will ramp up its already brisk pace of weapons testing, which has included missiles meant to target USA forces throughout Asia and on the US mainland.

Exports of refined petroleum to the North will be limited to two million barrels per year, effective January 1, the Commerce Ministry said.

"North Korea's weapons program is a grave threat to the Asia-Pacific region and the entire global community".

"People say this is all part of its brinkmanship strategy to force the USA to come forward for negotiation". "I will surely and definitely tame the mentally deranged United States dotard with fire".

Trump heightened his own rhetoric during his first-ever speech to the United Nations' General Assembly this week, threatening that if North Korea does not deescalate its nuclear aggression, the U.S. will "have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea".

North Korea has been maintaining a torrid pace in nuclear and weapons tests as it accelerates its pursuit of nuclear weapons that could viably target the United States and its allies in Asia.

In response, Kim said Trump will "pay dearly" for threatening to destroy North Korea. "The Secretary-General emphasized the need for a political solution".

Monitoring groups estimate that the nuclear test conducted in North Korea earlier this month had a yield of 250 kilotons, which is 16 times the size of the U.S. bomb that destroyed Hiroshima in 1945.

In his statement, Kim seemed surprised by Trump's threat of destroying North Korea completely, saying that it went beyond the usual threat of regime change.

North Korea's neighbors said Saturday they have detected a shallow 3.4-magnitude quake in North Korea.

An image released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency on August 14 shows North Korean communist dictator Kim Jong-Un while inspecting the Command of the Strategic Force of the Korean People's Army at an undisclosed location. The North Korean dictator said Trump would "pay a heavy price" for his statements.

Washington announced tougher restrictions Friday aimed at curbing North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programme, building on new tough United Nations sanctions aimed to choke Pyongyang of cash.

The CTBTO, or Comprehensive Test-Ban Treaty Organization, which monitors nuclear tests, and officials of the South Korean meteorological agency also said they believed it was a natural quake. It will also ban imports of textiles from North Korea.

The larger one had a 3.4 magnitude, the group's initial assessment found. A second one took place at 4:29 a.m. ET around the same area.

Such a test with a live warhead would tell North Korea's engineers whether their bomb design can survive the rigors of flight and re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere, says Michael Elleman, a missile defense expert at the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

The US Geological Survey measured a magnitude 3.5 natural disaster 22 kilometers (more than 13 miles) east-northeast of Sungjibaegam, North Korea.