WASHINGTON (AP) - The top U.S. military commander in the Pacific says North Korea's pursuit of nuclear weapons and long-range ballistic missiles represents a clear and direct threat to the United States and its allies in the region.
Adm. Samuel Locklear, commander of U.S. Pacific Command, tells a Senate committee Tuesday that Kim Jong Un, the country's young and still relatively untested new leader, has used the past year to consolidate his power.
Locklear says North Korea is keeping a large percentage of its combat forces along the demilitarized zone with South Korea, a position that allows North Korea to threaten U.S. and South Korean civilian and military personnel. Locker also tells the committee that this situation creates an environment marked by the potential for miscalculation.
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