South Korean president to meet U.S. military officials amid rising tensions on peninsula

President of South Korea Moon Jae-in will meet with U.S. military leaders on Monday, August 14, to discuss the escalating tensions between North Korea and the United States. Photo by Molly Riley/UPI |

Aug. 13 (UPI) — South Korean President Moon Jae-in is set to meet U.S. military officials on Monday amid rising tensions on the peninsula. Moon will discuss North Korea‘s military threat with Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford.

Gen. Dunford is expected in Seoul on Monday as part of a two day visit to South Korea. The general is also scheduled to visit China and Japan.

Monday’s meeting will also be attended by U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Marc Napper, as well as Vincent K. Brooks, head of U.S. armed forces in Korea.

Last week, President Trump warned North Korea would face “fire and fury” should the country continue to pursue a long-range missile system and other upgrades to its nuclear weapons arsenal. The president has since doubled downed on his threats.

On Friday, the Trump wrote: “Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely. Hopefully Kim Jong Un will find another path!”

In response, North Korea, which has launched several test missiles in recent months, threatened to launch additional missiles into the waters near Guam.

Over the weekend, U.S. officials said the U.S. isn’t on the verge war with North Korea, despite escalating rhetoric.

On CBS’s Face the Nation on Sunday, CIA Director Mike Pompeo said there is no intelligence to suggest an attack from North Korea is forthcoming, and that the country’s nuclear program isn’t moving faster than previously thought.

“It’s not something that is imminent and the American people should know that this administration is doing everything within its power, the president has enabled the intelligence community, the Department of Defense, to be sure that we’re protecting America from this threat,” Pompeo said.

Pompeo — who was appointed by Trump to head the CIA shortly after the president’s November election — said the administration “has done a fine job of not drawing red lines that we’re not prepared to enforce.”

Others have been more critical of Trump’s threats.

On NBC’s Meet the Press, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Michael Mullen said the president’s words have harmed, not helped, the situation.

“It eliminates maneuver space for him because it looks like brinkmanship to me,” Mullen said of Trump’s threats.

A recent CBS poll found 61 percent of respondents were “uneasy” with Trump’s ability to handle the North Korean nuclear situation.


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