U.S. defense chief Mattis threatens 'massive military response' if North Korea attacks

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Sunday threatened a “massive military response” to any attack on the United States or its allies after North Korea conducted its most powerful nuclear test to date.

Speaking outside the White House, Mattis said: “Any threat to the United States or its territories, including Guam or our allies will be met with a massive military response, a response both effective and overwhelming.”

Mattis said Washington was not looking for the “total annihilation of a country, namely North Korea. But as I said, we have many options to do so.”

Reporting by Susan Cornwell and Diane Bartz; Editing by Peter Cooney