PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — There's been a fresh round of war-like rhetoric today from North Korea, which is claiming that it has "powerful striking means" on standby.
Officials in Seoul and Washington are speculating that the North is preparing to test-fire a missile designed to be able to reach the U.S. territory of Guam in the Pacific.
But on the streets of North Korea's capital, citizens have shifted into party mode -- celebrating the anniversary of leader Kim Jong Un's appointment to the country's top party post a year ago.
Overseas, however, North Korea is hearing condemnation. Foreign ministers from the Group of Eight nations, meeting in London, slammed the North for "aggressive rhetoric" that they said would only further isolate that country.
In South Korea, the official who's that country's point person on relations with the North is urging Pyongyang to engage in dialogue, and reverse its decision to pull workers from a joint industrial park just north of their shared border.
Meanwhile, Secretary of State John Kerry is headed to Seoul for talks with South Korean officials before heading on to China.
The U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency has concluded that North Korea is probably at the point at which it could arm a ballistic missile with a nuclear warhead, but the weapon wouldn't be very reliable. The assessment was revealed at a public hearing in Washington.
262-w-37-(Sagar Meghani (SAH'-gur meh-GAH'-nee), AP national security correspondent, with Congressman Doug Lamborn, R-Colo., and Joint Chiefs Chairman Martin Dempsey)--A Pentagon report says North Korea's nuclear weapons knowledge has probably advanced to the point where it could arm a ballistic missile with a nuclear warhead. AP National Security Correspondent Sagar Meghani reports from the Pentagon. (11 Apr 2013)
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025-w-34-(Sagar Meghani (SAH'-gur meh-GAH'-nee), AP national security correspondent, with Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Joint Chiefs Chairman Martin Dempsey)--The Pentagon continues waiting and watching to see if North Korea carries out a missile test, or something more drastic. AP National Security Correspondent Sagar Meghani reports from the Pentagon. (11 Apr 2013)
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GRAPHICSBANK: Kim Jong Un, as leader of North Korea, on texture, with text bar, lettering, NORTH KOREA, partial graphic (11 Apr 2013)