N. Korea apparently on 'cusp of potentially another ICBM test': US general
Published : May 20, 2022 - 10:21
Updated : May 20, 2022 - 10:21
This photo from the US Forces Korea website shows Lieut. Gen. Willard M. Burleson, the head of the Eighth US Army. (US Forces Korea website)

North Korea appears to be on the "cusp of potentially another intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) test," a top US military officer in South Korea has said, stressing the allied troops are "standing ready" to deal with it.

During a security forum in Hawaii on Wednesday (local time), Lt. Gen. Willard M. Burleson, the head of the Eighth US Army, made the remarks amid rising concerns about the possibilities of an ICBM or nuclear test by Pyongyang.

"We think we are on the cusp of potentially another ICBM test. ... That (ICBM) means the US homeland, that means Guam, that means Hawaii. It means all of us, and potentially an underground nuclear test," Burleson said at the event hosted by the Association of the US Army.

"We are faced with the threat with an adversary who's going to be nuclear capable if not already. So what's the answer? Our answer is the alliances and partnerships," he added.

Underscoring the importance of training and readiness, the general said that both South Korean and American forces are "ready."

"They're flying reconnaissance aircraft as we speak. There are Patriot crew members, THAAD crew members, radar men and women that are standing ready," he said, referring to the air and missile defense forces. "There are artillery batteries and missile batteries that are standing ready, that within minutes can respond."

Also attending the forum was British Lt. Gen. Andrew Harrison, the deputy commander of the U.N. Command (UNC).

Citing the war in Ukraine, Harrison highlighted the importance of an alliance or coalition in the event of a modern conflict.

"A reason why (the Ukrainians) are having so much success is the fact that actually this is a coalition," he said, noting that Ukraine has been supported by other nations providing training, equipment and expertise. (Yonhap)