North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un visit Ryuwon Footwear Factory in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang on October 19, 2017. KCNA/via REUTERS
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The threat from North Korea has grown to a "critical and imminent level" and the United States, Japan and South Korea must address the matter, Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera told his U.S. and South Korean counterparts in talks on Monday.Onodera's remarks underscored the deep concern in Tokyo after North Korean weapons tests, including test firing missiles over Japan, as Pyongyang seeks to develop a nuclear-tipped missile capable of reaching the United States.His comments broke from more measured language on Monday by U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-Moo, as the three men met on the sidelines of a gathering of Asian defense chiefs in the Philippines.Mattis has been more cautious in his public remarks than U.S. President Donald Trump, who has been locked in a war of words with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, threatening to destroy North Korea if necessary to defend the United States and its allies.
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