Most South Koreans doubt the North will start a war

South Korea expects North to launch ICBM on Saturday, defense minister says

Clashes Erupt Over THAAD Deployment in S. Korea

As the additional missile launchers arrived in Seongju late Wednesday, they were met by hundreds of protesters, who believe the system's presence could lead to environmental and health problems.

"We have chose to temporarily deploy the remaining launchers along with USA construction equipment and materials (.) to prepare for the heightened security situation in North Korea due to North Korea's nuclear and missile threats", the South Korean Defence Ministry said in a statement.

South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon admitted that the decision to deploy the THAAD was hard but necessary in order to "protect the lives and safety of the people in response to the sophistication of North Korea's nuclear and missile programmes", according to Yonhap agency.

In another development, dozens were injured when protests broke out in Seoul over USA military adding more launchers to the high-tech missile-defence system THAAD in a southern town to counter North Korean threats. Two launchers have been operational at the site since May.

South Korea President Moon Jae-in held discussions on North Korea with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, hosted by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

That rollout was "temporarily" completed Thursday, a spokesman for South Korea's defense ministry said, adding it was necessary to counter increased threats from North Korea. Abe is due to meet Putin separately later today.

Senator Payne again stressed China must do more and said Australia wanted the UN Security Council to consider further strong measures.

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The federal government is considering how to evacuate the 200,000 Australians in north Asia should tensions with North Korea escalate into war.

Russian Federation has protested the move on similar grounds.

US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said he had an executive order ready for Trump to sign that would impose sanctions on any country that trades with North Korea, if the United Nations does not put impose new sanctions on it.

His efforts have been hampered by bellicose rhetoric on all sides of the North Korean issue, and worsening relations between Seoul and Washington.

For the second time in its history, Japan has carried out a series of anti-missile drills at a U.S. airbase in the northern Tohoku region, as tensions mount with North Korea's missile and nuclear weapons program.

"This is a critical test for the global community".

Still, security experts say the United States will not allow a nuclear-armed South Korea, as an atomic arms race would only further complicate the security situation in Northeast Asia.

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