Thursday, August 10, 2017

North Korea missiles can reach Guam in 14 minutes, local official says

If North Korea fires missiles toward Guam, they would take about 14 minutes to reach the island, said Guam Homeland Security spokeswoman Jenna Gaminde.

She said residents would be immediately notified by the 15 All-Hazards Alert Warning System sirens, located in low-lying areas throughout the island.

“If you hear the sirens, tune into local media  radio, print, television for further instructions.”
Jenna Gaminde, Guam Homeland Security spokeswoman
North Korea announced Thursday that the nation has a detailed plan for a missile strike near Guam using four intermediate-range ballistic rockets.

“Our office will be notified from the military and will utilize all forms of mass communication to get the message out to the public,” Gaminde said. Local media, village mayors and social media would be used to disseminate information, she said.

“If you hear the sirens, tune into local media  radio, print, television  for further instructions," Gaminde said.

Four rockets

North Korea said under the plan, four Hwasong-12 rockets would fly over Shimane, Hiroshima and Koichi prefectures in Japan, hitting waters 19 to 25 miles from the island, the Associated Press reported. The plan could be sent to leader Kim Jong Un for approval within a week or so.

Greg Kuntz, acting public affairs director for Joint Region Marianas, said the military on island continues to maintain standard operations amid threats from North Korea.

“We always maintain a high state of readiness,” Kuntz said. “We’re maintaining normal operations.”


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Local and federal officials said there’s no change in threat level and all operations continue as normal.

Kuntz said that nothing has changed in terms of Joint Region Marianas’ procedures when it comes to communications between the military and dependents.

Gov. Eddie Calvo and Guam Homeland Security Advisor George Charfauros on Wednesday noted the defense systems put in place in the region, such as the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, or THAAD, missile system permanently stationed at Andersen Air Force Base.Guam’s faced previous threats of a rocket attack from North Korea, which has been conducting frequent tests of its nuclear missile capability. Most recently, in March 2013, North Korean military officials made a statement about Andersen Air Force Base being within “striking range.”

In October 2006, an unofficial spokesman for North Korea in Japan told ABC Radio Australia that Guam, Japan, and Hawaii were potential targets if the U.N. levied tougher sanctions against North Korea.

Carl Peterson, president of Money Resources Inc., serves on the Guam Chamber of Commerce's Armed Forces Committee, expressed confidence in the U.S. military's defense capabilities.

“I don’t think there’s anything to worry about. No missile is going to land on Guam,” Peterson said Thursday. “We’ve got defense mechanisms in place … they have the ability to seek out the missiles with kinetic energy and destroy it.