Military Action Against North Korea Should Not Be an Option - US Congresswoman

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Seoul's Joint Chiefs of Staff spokesman Roh Jae-cheon said Thursday that the USA and South Korean militaries are prepared to "immediately and sternly punish" any kind of provocation by North Korea, but didn't elaborate on how the allies are preparing.

U.S. Defense Secretary General James Mattis said on Thursday that the country's military is "ready" to counter the threat from North Korea. "It doesn't need another characterization beyond the fact that it would be catastrophic".

Mattis' comments come on the heels of North Korea's state media announcement Thursday that its military would devise a plan by mid-August to fire four intermediate range missiles at the USA territory of Guam as a "crucial warning to the U.S".

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"If North Korea does anything in terms of even thinking about attack, of anybody that we love or we represent or our allies or us, they can be very, very nervous", Trump said.

North Korea announced that military leaders are planning to launch four intermediate-range Hwasong-12 missiles only 25 miles off the coast of Guam, a US territory in the Pacific Ocean.

A separate statement by the Korean People's Army (KPA) also threatened to turn Seoul into "a sea of fire", comments condemned yesterday as "thoughtless" by South Korean military officials.

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"The American effort is diplomatically led, it has diplomatic traction, it is gaining diplomatic results and I want to stay right there right now", Mattis said the event.

The North was responding to Trump's threat in a statement from its military carried by state-run news agency KCNA.

It says North Korea will complete a plan by mid-August for the "historic enveloping fire at Guam", convey it to the commander in chief of its nuclear force and then "wait for his order".

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He said that the U.S.is dealing with the North Korean threat with an effective diplomatic effort.

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