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Japan: North Korea threat imminent

Japan’s defense minister reportedly said Monday that the threat from North Korea is both “unprecedented” and “imminent.”

Itsunori Onodera pushed for “different responses” as he spoke with Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisOvernight Defense: Latest on spending fight - House passes stopgap with defense money while Senate nears two-year budget deal | Pentagon planning military parade for Trump | Afghan war will cost B in 2018 US expands air campaign to northern Afghanistan Mattis defends plans for new nuclear capabilities MORE and South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo, The Associated Press reported. 

Onodera's comments came during discussions in the Philippines.

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“The country has steadfastly improved it nuclear and missiles capability,” Onodera said.

“The threat posed by North Korea has grown to the unprecedented, critical and imminent level,” he added.

The meeting between the officials comes ahead of President Trump’s trip to the region next month.

North Korea in July conducted two intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) tests and said last month that it had successfully tested a miniaturized hydrogen bomb that could be placed on an ICBM.