PYONGYANG, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) on Friday accused the U.S. military presence in South Korea of being the "root cause of instability" in the Korean Peninsula and even in the entire Northeast Asian region.
In a statement released by the official KCNA news agency, the Institute for Disarmament and Peace of the DPRK Foreign Ministry also labeled the U.S. forces in South Korea as a "cancer-like entity," noting that they have been leading tension-stoking U.S.-South Korea joint military maneuvers.
"What is the most serious in the activities conducted by the U.S. forces in South Korea is the joint military exercises that cause a vicious circle of tensions on the peninsula," the statement said.
The statement called the U.S. military presence in South Korea an "anachronistic mistake," as 69 years have passed since 1945 when the United States first stationed its troops in South Korea, and the political landscape in Northeast Asia has witnessed drastic changes.
The U.S.-led military drills jointly carried out with South Korea "can never be tolerated" as they are "very dangerous saber-rattling that can cause catastrophic consequences" in terms of their scale, nature and frequency, despite the attempts of the two allies to justify them as "annual and defensive," said the statement.
It is self-evident that the Korean Peninsula's situation would not have deteriorated if the United States had pulled its forces out of South Korea, it stressed.
The statement also called on the international community to pay due attention to the joint U.S.-South Korea military exercises, saying U.S. forces in South Korea play a key role in threatening peace and stability in the region.