PYONGYANG, March 7 (Xinhua) -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) warned Thursday it would take more severe countermeasures if the United Nations Security Council adopted its proposed new sanctions.
A Foreign Ministry spokesman also warned, if the United States dared ignite the fuse of a nuclear war, the DRPK would exercise its right to a preemptive nuclear attack for self-defense, the official KCNA news agency reported.
Although the DPRK had focused on restraint, the ever-increasing scale of U.S.-South Korea military drills could only lead it to military countermeasures rather than diplomatic solutions, the unnamed spokesman said.
The United States and a number of other countries are pressing for stricter sanctions against Pyongyang in the U.N. Security Council after the DPRK conducted its third nuclear test on Feb. 12, which drew condemnations from the international community.
The DPRK said on Feb. 12 it was a "natural and just measure for self-defense to react to the ever-increasing U.S. nuclear threat," threatening to "take the second and third stronger steps in succession" if the United States, its "sworn enemy," continued with its hostility.
The United States and South Korea will launch their annual joint military exercises on March 11. The drill, which is dubbed Key Resolve and will involve 10,000 South Korean and 3,500 U.S. troops, was denounced by the KCNA as a prelude to an invasion.
Thurday's harsh rhetoric came two days after the DPRK's supreme military command announced it would scrap the Korean War Armistice Agreement on March 11, in response to the drill, which is scheduled to run until March 21.
The DPRK's latest move is seen as a bid to defy the possible new U.N. sanctions and replace the armistice agreement with a peace treaty that guarantees Pyongyang's security, as requested by DPRK at the six-party talks.
The Korean War broke out in 1950 and entered a ceasefire on July 27, 1953 when the Armistice Agreement was signed. The agreement was designed to "insure a complete cessation of hostilities and of all acts of armed force in Korea until a final peaceful settlement is achieved."
As tensions have escalated sharply on the Korean Peninsula in recent days, China has called for calmness and restraint in the face of a complicated and subtle situation.
On Wednesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said China urged related parties to start from peace and stability on the peninsula and refrain from actions that may escalate the tensions.
On the question of U.N. sanctions, Hua said China supported an appropriate response which showed the U.N.'s opposition to the DPRK's nuclear test.
PYONGYANG, March 7 (Xinhua) -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) will exercise the right to preemptive nuclear strikes to defend itself, if the United States ignites a nuclear war, the official KCNA news agency reported on Thursday, citing a foreign ministry spokesman.
"Since the United States is about to ignite a nuclear war, we will be exercising our right to preemptive nuclear attack against the headquarters of the aggressor in order to protect our supreme interest," the spokesman said in a statement.Full story
PYONGYANG/WASHINGTON, March 7 (Xinhua) -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) has vowed to nullify an armistice that ended the 1950-53 Korean War from March 11, and warned of more and stronger countermeasures if the United States and South Korea continued joint military drills.
The announcement, made by DPRK's top Army Supreme Command on a rare appearance on the state TV, came when the UN Security Council is ironing out penalties against Pyongyang over its third nuclear test on Feb. 12. Diplomats said that a Council resolution condemning the test and toughening sanctions on DPRK will be put to a vote as early as this week.Full story