North Korea: South seizes second ship in oil supply row

     COMPARISON Donald Trump and Kim Jon-un have been locked in a vicious war of words in 2017

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said Monday that the United States would never be able to start a war against North Korea now that his country had developed the capability to hit all of the USA mainland with its nuclear weapons.

In this December 23, 2017, photo distributed on December 24, 2017, by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un addresses a ruling party conference in Pyongyang.

He used the message to warn the United States that the country is now in range of his nuclear warheads.

"We are in close contact with the ROK (South Korea) about our unified response to North Korea", Voice of America quoted a State Department official as saying when asked to comment on the address.

Kim also indicated an interest in sending a delegation to participate in the Winter Olympics, which its southern neighbor is scheduled to host in February, according to the report.

The venues for the Games lie just 80 kilometres (50 miles) south of the tense border with the North and the build-up to the event has been overshadowed by tensions running high over the North's escalating nuclear and missile tests.

After reiterating that his country had "completed" its nuclear deterrent against the United States - a fact that its state media proclaimed following the successful flight-test of the Hwasong-15 intercontinental-range ballistic missile on November 29 - Kim added that he had a "nuclear button" physically installed on his desk in his office.

His annual speech serves as a indication of his priorities for 2018.

In his interview Sunday, Graham said his prediction on the chance of a war with North Korea is "based on a lot of time with President Trump".

North Korea had achieved its goal of becoming a nuclear state. "The U.S. can never start a war against myself and our nation now".

Even so, Trump has also floated the idea of friendship with Kim on occasion, and has called on him to "make a deal" on North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programs. He said the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang would be a "good opportunity" to present a more united Korean nation.

Kim said it was imperative to lower military tensions on the Korean peninsula and to improve ties with the South, adding that the path to dialogue was open.

"We are grateful for the ROK's continued efforts to fully enforce UN Resolutions and take action against violations of UN sanctions", the official said.



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