North Korea parades military weapons, but no nuke test

The development comes days after the U.S. dispatched what Trump referred to as an "armada" of warships in a show of force into waters off the Korean peninsula amid concerns that Pyongyang was preparing another round of nuclear or missile tests.

"We will respond to an all-out war with an all-out war and a nuclear war with our style of a nuclear attack", said Choe, widely seen by analysts as North Korea's No. 2 official.

Intelligence agencies and analysts had warned that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un might commemorate the annual holiday Saturday marking the 105th birthday of his grandfather Kim Il Sung, the founder of North Korea, to conduct a nuclear weapons test or yet another missile test.

Speculation is brewing that the North is preparing a sixth nuclear test, with satellite images showing its main nuclear site "primed and ready", according to specialist USA website 38North.

The range of new hardware on display came as a bit of a surprise, and it's been interpreted as a show of force to the U.S. President Donald Trump, who has taken an aggressive tone against Pyongyang.

Kim Dong-yub, a North Korea expert at Seoul's Institute for Far Eastern Studies, said the canisters and trucks suggested that the North was developing technology to "cold launch" ICBMs, ejecting them from the canisters before they ignite.

"Our toughest counteraction against the USA and its vassal forces will be taken in such a merciless manner as not to allow the aggressors to survive", the official said, according to North Korea's state news agency.

Rows of military bands, goose-stepping and sword-wielding soldiers marched through Pyongyang's main Kim Il-sung square for the "Day of the Sun" celebrations.

The North has been increasingly challenging the U.S.in rhetoric following ambiguous language from the Trump administration as well as the recent missile strike against Syrian government forces.

The comments come after the USA dropped a MOAB (Massive Ordnance Air Blast) bomb on an ISIS tunnel in Nangahar, Afghanistan, sparking a response from North Korea.

It has carried out five nuclear tests - two of them previous year - and multiple missile launches, one of which involved several rockets landing in waters close to Japan last month.

The North has reiterated its constant refrain that it is ready for "war" with the US.

The US, which has moved an aircraft carrier and several other warships towards the Korean peninsula, has previously warned its policy of "strategic patience" with North Korea is over. Also on display was a powerful mid-range missile that outside analysts call a "Musudan", and which can potentially reach USA air bases in Guam, as well as a new solid-fuel mid-range missile that can be fired from land mobile launchers, making them harder to detect before launch.

Pyongyang has showcased its submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs) for the first time during a massive military parade, with a senior North Korean official vowing due response to any attack against the East Asian nation.

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