U.S. Says THAAD Missile System In South Korea Is Now Operational

But the system's arrival hasn't been received well in South Korea, either.

A 64-year-old former human rights lawyer who was chief of staff to former progressive president Roh Moo-hyun, Moon has a commanding lead in the polls. He is now regularly attracting twice the support rate of his closest rival, centrist Ahn Cheol-soo. But the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier and the USS Michigan, a nuclear-powered submarine, remain in nearby waters, while North Korea continues to take provocative actions.

Retail conglomerate Lotte, which previously owned the golf course, has also been targeted, with 85 of its 99 stores in China shut down, while South Korea's biggest automaker Hyundai Motor has said its Chinese sales have fallen sharply.

"I don't think Kim would really want to wage a war with the U.S.".

The expression had a "diplomatic" connotation, Spicer said.

US presidents looking to halt North Korea's push for nuclear weapons over the years normally haven't had very kind words to describe its dictators.

No American president has met with a North Korean leader since Kim's grandfather Kim Il Sung established a Stalinist state there after the Korean War.

China's Global Times, a state-backed tabloid that does not necessarily reflect national policy, said in an editorial late on Monday the USA should not rely on China alone to pressure Pyongyang into giving up its nuclear ambitions.

"So say what you want, but that is not easy, especially at that age", Trump told Reuters, adding that he did not know whether or not he was rational.

"If Kim Jong-un were to make some strides toward stopping what he's doing, then sitting down and discussing that could well be the right thing to do", he said.

There is some overlap here.

"If it would be appropriate for me to meet with him, I would absolutely, I would be honored to do it", Trump said during an interview with Bloomberg News. Trump's remark may have been in response to this.

North Korea's increasing missile tests and threats to either conduct a new nuclear weapons test or even to start a nuclear war have put numerous countries on edge, with many of the threats pointed at the United States and its Asian allies Japan and South Korea.

Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton, speaking at a luncheon in NY, mocked Trump's offer to talk with Kim, saying negotiations US should be weighed carefully as part of a strategy to pressure North Korea in coordination with other nations.

"The most serious risk with this series of uncoordinated and controversial statements is that they undermine the most important currency of USA power: the credibility of the president's words", said Evan S. Medeiros, who served as a senior Asia adviser to former President Barack Obama.

"This is also the only correct choice", Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said, calling on all sides to "find a breakthrough in the resumption of peace talks as soon as possible".

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson speaks at a Security Council meeting on the situation in North Korea at the United Nations, in New York City, US, Friday.



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