We begin with the latest coming out of North Korea
The North’s top official of the Workers’ Party has said that “North Korea has nothing more to lose” once again reminding the U.S. to come up with a new approach towards denuclearization negotiations.
This follows Trump’s rare warning to Kim Jong-un that he risks losing “everything” if he continues with provocations.
Let’s get the latest on mounting Pyeongyang-Washington tensions from our Kim Ji-yeon. Ji-yeon fill us in.
Half an hour ago North Korea's former nuclear negotiator Kim Yong-chol slammed U.S. President Trump's tweet saying North Korea has nothing more to lose.
Kim made the remarks in a statement carried by the North's Korean Central News Agency stressing its unilaterally imposed year-end deadline for denuclearization talks is nearing.
He added there are so many things Trump doesn't know about North Korea and that the tweet showed how anxious he is.
Kim's remarks are in response to U.S. President Trump's tweet on Sunday which said "Kim Jong-un is too smart and has far too much to lose, everything actually, if he acts in a hostile way."
The tweet implied a strong warning to Kim Jong-un to not interfere with the next year's U.S. presidential election.
And this is one of the many statements Washington has made to ramp up pressure on Pyeongyang after the regime announced it carried out a "very important test" in its missile launching site in Dongchang-ri over the weekend.
Trump's rhetoric was echoed by U.S. National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien.
When asked if the North was ready to resume its nuclear weapons test, O'Brien in an interview with CBS on Sunday said he hoped North Korea doesn't make that kind of mistake.
O'Brien said he hoped Kim Jong-un follows through on this promise to denuclearize referring to the Singapore summit held last June between North Korea and the U.S.
Ever since the North launched projectiles from its super-large multiple rocket launcher on November 28th the U.S. has noticeably increased its reconnaissance missions over the Korean peninsula.
According to privately run military aircraft tracker Aircraft Spots the U.S. Air Force has deployed its Rivet Joint RC-135W over the peninsula on Monday, the same spy jet the U.S. deployed last Monday and Thursday as well.
The aircraft can detect signals emitted before a missile launch as well as track flight paths of ballistic missiles.
Meanwhile, Seoul's defense ministry said Monday that it's been working closely with the U.S. to analyze the test that North Korea claimed to have conducted at its satellite launching site in Dongchang-ri over the weekend.
The ministry refused to make public its initial assessment of the test.
The spokesperson said earlier today that the ministry's in close coordination with the U.S. and that they're keeping a close eye on any movement in major sites in North Korea, including the Dongchang-ri site.
And just a few minutes ago, a South Korean military source has confirmed that the test conducted by the North is NOT related to a solid fuel engine combustion test as speculated by multiple media outlets in South Korea but actually a liquid fuel engine test similar to the ones done in previous years by the North.
Back to you.