Military 'Locked And Loaded' If North Korea Missteps


US intelligence does not indicate an imminent nuclear war with North Korea, the chief of the Central Intelligence Agency said Sunday, after a week of bellicose rhetoric between the two sides.

His comments come amid growing tensions between the USA and the rogue nation - over its nuclear program.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo said on Sunday he would not be surprised if North Korea tested another missile, given that it had two tests in July.

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

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

North Korea, according to the director, has been moving at an "ever alarming rate" to develop nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles. That prompted a new round of United Nations economic sanctions, which angered Mr Kim's regime. When host Chris Wallace pressed him about how close North Korea is to being able to hit the USA mainland, Pompeo said that it was alarming but hard to define. "But we're taking all possible actions short of military action to resolve this very grave threat to the United States and the world", the lieutenant general said, citing diplomatic efforts, increased sanctions and increased pressure.

Thursday: He says that his "fire and fury" warning maybe "wasn't tough enough".

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"Nothing is imminent. But be careful, the increased likelihood of a nuclear missile strikes the United States is a very unsafe threat", added the director of the u.s. central intelligence agency.

On Friday, Trump said a military option against Venezuela was on the table, and he described the situation there as a "dangerous mess". "I've seen no intelligence to indicate that we're in that place today", he told Fox News Sunday.

Several countries have expressed concern with the escalation of the crisis.

Meanwhile, top USA military officer General Joseph Dunford is in Asia and is expected to meet with leaders in South Korea, Japan and China.

Last week, North Korea threatened to strike the United States and its Pacific territory of Guam.

In response, Mr Trump said North Korea should expect "big, big trouble" if anything happened to Guam.