North Korea to US: Take our threat of a nuclear test over Pacific 'literally'

North Korea to US: Take our threat of a nuclear test over Pacific 'literally'

The United States should take North Korea's threat to test a nuclear weapon over the Pacific Ocean "literally," a senior North Korean official said.

North Korea made the threat last month amid rising tensions with the country.

Speaking in New York, North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho had warned of a powerful hydrogen bomb test over the Pacific.

"The foreign minister is very well aware of the intentions of our supreme leader," Ri Yong-pil, deputy chief of the North Korean Foreign Ministry's Institute for American Studies, told CNN. "So I think you should take his words literally."

The official added North Korea "has always brought its words into action."

The new warning comes as President Trump plans to embark on a trip to Asia in November.

Pentagon boss Jim Mattis arrived in South Korea on Friday to meet with the nation's top defense officials and American military commanders on the front line in countering North Korea's nuclear weapons program.

Mattis is emphasizing the Trump administration's push for a diplomatic solution to the problem. But he also has said the U.S. is prepared to take military action if the North does not halt its development of missiles that could strike the entirety of the United States, potentially with a nuclear warhead.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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