UNITED NATIONS (AP) — North Korea's foreign minister told world leaders Saturday that U.S. President Donald Trump's insult calling leader Kim Jong Un “rocket man” makes “our rocket's trip to the U.S. mainland inescapable.”
Ri Yong Ho called the American president “a mentally deranged person filled with megalomania and complacency” with his finger on the “nuclear button.” And he said Trump's “reckless and violent words” had provoked “the greatest dignity” of North Korea and “left this sacred U.N. arena tainted.”
Ri's highly anticipated speech to the General Assembly's annual ministerial meeting fueled the fiery rhetoric between the U.S. Republican president as well as North Korea's young pioneer.
Trump threatened in his address to the 193-member world body on Tuesday to “totally destroy” North Korea if compelled to defend the U.S. or its allies. Kim, in an odd direct announcement to the world, reacted pledging to take “highest-level” action against America.
“None other than Trump himself is on a suicide mission,” Ri told the meeting Saturday. “If innocent lives of the U.S. are wasted as a result of this suicide attack, Trump will be held totally responsible.”
In a series of American military might, U.S. bombers and fighter escorts flew in international airspace on Saturday into the farthest point north of the boundary between North Korea and South Korea that any American aircraft has gone in this century.
Defense Department spokesman Dana White said the assignment demonstrated “U.S. sent a clear message that the president has many military options to defeat any threat.” He said it showed how badly Trump takes North Korea's “reckless behaviour”
Ri known as the Democratic People's Republic of Korea — the nation's official title — “a responsible nuclear weapon state.”
But he cautioned that “we'll take preventative steps by merciless pre-emptive actions in the event the U.S. and its vassal forces reveal any indication of conducting a sort of ‘decapitating' functioning on the headquarters or military attack against our nation.”
Ri said, however, that North Korea has no intention of using or threatening to use nuclear weapons against states that don't combine U.S. military activities against the DPRK.
The U.N. Security Council has imposed its toughest sanctions ever against Pyongyang, but Ri stated “it is simply a forlorn hope to look at any possibility that the DPRK will be shaken a inch or alter its stance as a result of harsher sanctions from the hostile forces.”
Ri suggested to reporters Friday in New York that his nation could run an atmospheric hydrogen bomb test to meet Kim's vow to do it. But he made no mention of such a test Saturday.
He did state that North Korea's recent successful “ICBM-mountable H-bomb evaluation” was part of their attempt to complete the nation's nuclear force.
“Our national nuclear force is, to all intents and purposes, a war deterrent for putting an end to nuclear threat of the U.S. and for preventing its military invasion,” Ri said, “and our final objective is to establish the balance of power with the U.S.”
The foreign minister's opening remarks reflected the profound anger in North Korea in Trump's derisive nickname for Kim, who's revered by a lot of people in the North.
Throughout Trump's eight months in power, Ri said the American president had turned the White House “to a noisy advertising place,” and now he's attempted to turn the United Nations “to a gangsters' nest where cash is respected and bloodshed is the order of the day.”
The North Korean minister named Trump a “gambler that grew older with threats, frauds and the rest of the approaches to acquire a patch of land” and claimed he's even derided by the American people as “Commander in Grief,” “Lyin King,” and “President Evil.”
“Because of his lacking of basic common knowledge and appropriate sentiment, he tried to insult the supreme dignity of the country by referring it to a rocket,” Ri said. “By doing this, however, he committed an irreversible error of creating our rockets' trip to the whole U.S. mainland inescapable all the more.”