China has put its military forces on “high alert” over North Korea’s increased threats about a pre-emptive strike, CNN reported Thursday.
The USS Carl Vinson, however, did not move toward North Korea when the White House said it would.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer denied Wednesday that Trump’s comments were misleading.
“The president said that we have an armada going toward the [Korean Peninsula]. That is fact. It happened. It is happening, rather,” Spicer said at a press briefing.
The ship’s reported movements led North Korea to threaten a pre-emptive strike against the U.S. if the Trump administration makes a "reckless" military decision.
Vice Minister Han Song Ryol told The Associated Press Friday that Trump's tweets create a "vicious cycle" of heightened tensions in the region, adding that North Korea plans to continue to stockpile nuclear weapons to be prepared for a U.S. strike.
"We've got a powerful nuclear deterrent already in our hands, and we certainly will not keep our arms crossed in the face of a U.S. pre-emptive strike," Han said. "Whatever comes from the U.S., we will cope with it. We are fully prepared to handle it."
The U.S. is also prepared for a pre-emptive strike again North Korea, according to a Thursday NBC News report.