North Korea has rubbished US President Donald Trump's threat, likening it to the sound of a barking dog. In the first response to Trump's address at the UN General Assembly, Pyongyang said the American leader's warning will remain a "dog's dream".

Trump, in his fiery speech to North Korea, had cautioned the US would "totally destroy" the reclusive nation if Pyongyang presses ahead with more provocative acts. This was Trump's first speech at the global body on Tuesday, 19 September.

Responding to Trump's remarks, North Korea's Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho said the speech was nothing more than the "sound of a barking dog".

"There is a saying that goes: 'Even when dogs bark, the parade goes on,'" said Ri while speaking to reporters outside a hotel in New York, close to the UN headquarters. Ri is set to speak at the UN on Friday, 22 September.

"If he was thinking he could scare us with the sound of a dog barking, that's really a dog dream," Ri said, referring to a Korean proverb. A "dog's dream" in Korean language is a thing that does not make much sense.

When asked about Trump's reference to North Korean leader Kim Jong-in as "rocket man" – a remark which visibly dismayed many in the audience in the UN gathering itself – Ri's sharp riposte was: "I feel sorry for his aides".

The US has been trying to put more pressure on North Korea because of Pyongyang's relentless efforts in strengthening its nuclear and missile arsenal. Besides firing multiple long-range missiles in the recent past, the North had also conducted its sixth and its most powerful nuclear test on 3 September – rattling several countries both inside and outside the region.

Trump addresses the 72nd United Nations General Assembly at UN headquarters in New York REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz