S. Korea installs parts of contentious US missile defense

South Korea's military said Tuesday that North Korea held major live-fire drills in an area around its eastern coastal town of Wonsan as it marked the anniversary of the founding of its military.

The country is celebrating the 85 anniversary of the founding of its military and conducted the military exercise amid growing concerns that the hermit kingdom could opt for a missile launch or a nuclear detonation.

Trump on Monday called on members of the U.N. Security Council to impose new sanctions on North Korea for its nuclear and ballistic missile programs, describing the country as "a real threat to the world".

The envoys agreed "to maximize pressure against North Korea by taking punitive measures that are hard to endure through a UN Security Council resolution and separate measures by the three countries if it persists with its provocations", South Korean foreign ministry spokesman Cho June-hyuck said in a briefing on the meeting.

The Korean Peninsula, located between the Sea of Japan and the Yellow Sea, has seen heightened tensions in recent months as US President Donald Trump has threatened to act against North Korea's continued missile tests. "People put blindfolds on for decades and now it's time to solve the problem".

Beijing banned imports of coal from North Korea in February.

The timing of the port visit also was significant as North Korea marked army foundation day, one of its biggest holidays, on Tuesday.

In a statement after the artillery drills were confirmed, the South Korean President's Office said an emergency meeting had been held to discuss the situation.

The report, citing an unidentified government source, said the live-fire exercise was possibly supervised by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The carrier group was sent to the region as a warning to North Korea and a show of solidarity with US allies.

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Japan's Foreign Ministry also announced that China's envoy for North Korea, Wu Dawei, is arriving in Tokyo on Tuesday for talks with Kanasugi, which may take place later this week. He is the third US citizen believed to be now detained in North Korea.

On the same day, a US guided-missile submarine docked in South Korea, and the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier is headed toward the peninsula for a joint exercise with South Korea.

Washington and Seoul are deploying the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) battery to counter the threat from North Korea, which is pushing ahead with its ballistic missile programme despite multiple sets of United Nations sanctions.

The nuclear-powered United States submarine USS Michigan also made a port call to the South's Busan on Tuesday in another show of force.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is to chair a ministerial-level Security Council meeting on the North on Friday.

The U.S. military started moving parts of its controversial THAAD anti-missile defense system to a deployment site in South Korea on Wednesday amid high tensions over North Korea's missile and nuclear programs.

"The steps we're seeing China take, in many ways unprecedented steps, bringing economic pressure to bear on North Korea are very welcome", US Vice President Mike Pence said Saturday. After withdrawing from the Nuclear Proliferation Treaty in 2003, North Korea has gone on to conducting several nuclear tests, most recently in September 2016.

President Donald Trump also has warned that all options including military strikes are on the table as he's determined to stop Pyongyang from achieving its stated goal of developing a nuclear-tipped missile that could reach the US mainland.

Asked whether a pre-emptive strike was under consideration, she told NBC's Today programme: "We are not going to do anything unless he gives us reason to do something".

USA envoy for North Korea Joseph Yun says he and his counterparts from Japan and South Korea agreed to coordinate "all actions" on North Korea.

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