South Korea braces for another possible missile test by the north

There's no indication that a September 9 test would target Guam, but North Korea has threatened to attack Guam in the past, and a missile test near the island would be likely seen as a major provocation.

China is a veto-wielding permanent member of the UN Security Council, as well as North Korea's main trading partner and source of food and fuel aid.

China, which is responsible for over 90% of North Korea's two-way trade, exports tonnes of oil and oil-based products to the impoverished regime every year and had been previously scorned by the U.S. for its failure to stand up to Pyongyang as Kim was continuously "begging for war".

"(The allies) completed the tentative deployment of the THAAD system today, as (they) agreed to additionally deploy the four remaining launchers", the South Korean defence ministry said in a statement adding that the extra launchers are part of the earlier agreement.

Around 600 United States troops taking part in military drills in Japan are said to be "ready" to react to any provocation from North Korea.

There are reports that President Trump has already authorized his national security team to act if a North Korean missile is headed toward Guam, Hawaii or the US homeland. He said the USA would fulfill its warnings if the UN Security Council failed to agree on additional sanctions when it meets next Monday.

"We will not be putting up with what's happening in North Korea", Trump told reporters Wednesday after the conversation.

North Korea broke from its pattern of lofted launches last month when it fired a powerful new intermediate range missile, the Hwasong-12, over northern Japan.

Amid the rising tension, South Korea installed the four remaining launchers of a US anti-missile Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system on a former golf course south of its capital, Seoul, early on Thursday.

Speaking on Thursday, South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon said its neighbour may launch another ICBM to mark its founding.

China and Russian Federation have advocated a "freeze for freeze" plan, under which the United States and South Korea would stop major military exercises in exchange for North Korea halting its weapons programs.

On April 26, two mobile launchers and other THAAD elements were delivered in the middle of night to the former golf course at Soseong-ri village in Seongju county, North Gyeongsang province.

The deployment has drawn strong objections from China, which believes the system's radar could be used to look deeply into its territory and will upset the regional security balance.

"The battery will be operational as soon as the USA finishes its internal procedures", South Korean defence ministry spokesman Moon Sang-gyun told reporters. South Korea and the United States are technically still at war with North Korea after the 1950-53 Korean conflict ended with a truce, not a peace treaty.


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