South Korea tells North Korea to stop issuing threats

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An air base with long-range bombers and a naval base that's home port for fast-attack submarines are among the most "strategically important" the USA has in the Pacific, according to the CIA World Factbook.

The two leaders also reiterated a commitment to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

"North Korea has always threatened other countries. Hopefully Kim Jong Un will find another path!" US President Donald Trump tweeted Friday.

Aircraft from Marine All Weather Fighter Attack Squadron 533 stand on the runway at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam.

The naval base is an important outpost for US fast-attack submarines that are a key means for gathering intelligence in the region, including the Korean peninsula and the South China Sea where China has been building military bases on man-made islands. Russian Federation and China have repeatedly called upon Pyongyang to stop nuclear tests at the same time urging Washington and Seoul to refrain from conducting joint drills.

But let's take a step back for a moment: Where is Guam, and why is it in North Korea's crosshairs?

The small USA territory of Guam has become a focal point after North Korea's army threatened to use ballistic missiles to create an "enveloping fire" around the island.

Pyongyang stepped up its bellicose rhetoric this week, threatening to target waters off Guam with intermediate range missiles.

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"The Hwasong-12 rockets to be launched by the KPA [Korean People's Army] will cross the sky above Shimane, Hiroshima and Koichi Prefectures of Japan", General Kim Rak-gyom, who commands the Korean People's Army's Strategic Force, stated as quoted by the media outlet.

South Korea and Japan warned North Korea that it would face a strong response if it carried through with a threat to launch a missile toward Guam. The tourist district, Tumon, is located between the two military bases.

"The units of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation in the Far East, including air defense battalions, are serving in normal mode".

The tension comes on the heels of an intelligence report that suggested North Korea has miniaturized nuclear weapons to fit on missiles.

Long used to living within the range of North Korea's artillery, people in the South have generally ignored its aggressiveness and series of nuclear and long-range missile tests.

"There is but one thing to do - to hold negotiations and one should exert pressure on the Americans".

German Chancellor Angela Merkel described escalation as "the wrong answer", while Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Trump's statements were "very worrying".

Kim expressed his confidence that the North Koreans wouldn't strike first. "It is just a shame that such infrastructure is not advertised well to the public and that we are short of emergency supplies", said Yang Uk, senior fellow at Korea Defense and Security Forum, a research institute in Seoul. It has seen various popular movements pushing for greater self-government or even US statehood, most notably a significant but failed effort in the 1980s to make it a commonwealth on par with Puerto Rico.

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