Confrontation with North Korea not imminent

CIA Director Mike Pompeo says nuclear war with North Korea is not 'imminent'

CIA Director Mike Pompeo said Pyongyang was moving at an "ever-alarming rate" with its weapons programme and another missile test would not be surprising. North Korean officials in turn have accused the US leader of driving the Korean peninsula to the brink of nuclear war. "[There is] no intelligence that would indicate we are in that place today".

Asked how anxious people should be, Pompeo told Fox News on Sunday: "There's nothing imminent today".

CIA Director Mike Pompeo told Fox News Sunday that another North Korean missile test would not come as a surprise amid the rising tensions between Washington and Pyongyang. "He conducted two in July, so it wouldn't surprise me if there was another missile test".

When asked about how close the North was to being able to deploy a nuclear weapon that could hit the U.S., he said: "They're closer".

Both sides have used hostile rhetoric, with President Donald Trump threatening "fire and fury" on the North.

North Korea, for its part, threatened to shoot four missiles towards the island of Guam, a strategic outpost of the u.s. forces in the Pacific, where are stationed about 6,000 american soldiers. "The increased chance that there will be a nuclear missile in Denver is a very serious threat". "We've engaged the world to support that policy", Pompeo told host Chris Wallace.

But he stressed the U.S. is pursuing "a very determined diplomatic effort" led by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson that is coupled with new financial sanctions to dissuade North Korean leader Kim Jong Un from further provocations.

H.R. McMaster, the White House national security advisor, said Trump, who alarmed many with his incendiary remarks about North Korea over the last week, had not drawn any "red line" regarding Kim's nuclear program.

"Our response is we're prepared militarily to deal with this if necessary".

Some former security and defense officials have said that Trump's rhetoric - including a threat of "fire and fury" and an assertion days later that the US military was "locked and loaded" in the face of North Korea's provocations - have made a volatile situation worse.

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