North Korea earthquake spreads fear as Trump again attacks ‘Little Rocket Man’
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North Korea earthquake spreads fear as Trump again attacks ‘Little Rocket Man’

THE WAR of words between North Korea and the United States has again escalated, as a 3.4 magnitude earthquake hit parts of North Korea on Saturday. Experts remain divided over whether it was the result of a nuclear test by Pyongyang or natural occurrence.

The US government said that the earthquake occurred in the area of previous North Korean nuclear tests, however that it “cannot conclusively confirm” whether it was natural or human-made. South Korea’s weather agency, however, said it was presumed to be natural.

It occurred hours after US Air Force planes flew in international airspace close to North Korea, in what the Pentagon called a show of force to illustrate the military options available to President Donald Trump.

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Star indicates the epicentre of 3.4 magnitude earthquake in North Korea on Sept 23, 2017. Source: US Geological Survey

SEE ALSO: Kim Jong Un says he will tame ‘mentally deranged’ Trump with fire

During an address to the UN General Assembly on Saturday, meanwhile, North Korea’s Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho said that targeting the US mainland with the country’s rockets was an inevitability because “Mr Evil President” Trump had insulted the rogue state’s regime.

In amongst tweets about NFL stars taking a knee during the US national anthem, Trump again lashed out at the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un by calling him “Little Rocket Man” and threatening that he “won’t be around much longer.”

Last week, Kim personally issued a statement in which he responded to Trump’s threat to “totally destroy” North Korea during his UN General Assembly address. The North Korean leader called Trump a “mentally deranged US dotard” and said he would have to “tame” America with fire.

Top advisers to the US president had repeatedly warned him not to personally attack Kim due to the North Korean leader’s unpredictable nature, but Trump went off-script and used the terms “Rocket Man” and “suicide mission”, reported the Los Angeles Times.

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Trump addresses the 72nd United Nations General Assembly at UN headquarters in New York, US on Sept 19, 2017. Source: Reuters/Eduardo Munoz

SEE ALSO: Trump speech reduces hope for peace with North Korea says Chinese media

Over the weekend, thousands of North Koreans attended an anti-American rally in Pyongyang. The country’s state media agency KCNA reported that more than 100,000 people attended on Saturday.

KCNA said that those attending the rally were “full of the stamina not to miss the golden opportunity for giving vent to pent-up wrath of the Korean people but to wipe out the US group of ignorant gangsters letting loose such invectives as ‘total destruction.’”

“We are waiting for the moment of final decisive battle to remove the US empire of evil, from the globe,” said Ri Il-bae, a commander from the Worker-Peasant Red Guards, as quoted by South Korea’s state news agency Yonhap.

“Once respected Supreme Commander Kim Jong-un issues an order, we will annihilate the group of aggressors with the arms of revolution.”