North Korea says its nuclear deterrence is ready
North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un said his country is ready to deploy its nuclear war deterrent and resist any U.S. military aggression and for the first time heavily criticised South Korea’s new president according to a North Korean News Agency report, Thursday.
Kim made the remarks at an event marking the occasion of the Korean War Armistice on July 27, marking the 69th anniversary of the signing between the two Koreas. Technically both sides are still at war.
“The confrontation with the United States posed nuclear threats since the 1950-53 war required us to achieve an urgent historical task of beefing up our self defence” the Supreme Leader said.
“Our armed forces are thoroughly prepared to respond to any crisis, and our nation’s nuclear war deterrence is also fully ready to mobilise its absolute strength faithfully, accurately and promptly to its mission,” he added.
Verbally bombarding the South Korea’s new conservative President Yoon Suk-yeol and calling him by name for the first time, Kim accusing him of threatening the North’s security and right to self defence.
Kim spoke after US and South Korea officials said Pyongyang was preparing for its second nuclear test after the first one in 2017. They said the test would probably be carried out around the anniversary of the Korean Armistice.
“The duplex act of the United States, which is misleading all the routine actions of our armed forces as ‘provocation’ and ‘threat’ while holding large-scale joint military exercises that seriously threaten our security, is literally a robbery,” Kim said. “That is driving bilateral relations to the point where it is difficult to turn back, into a state of conflict.”
Calling South Korean Blue House officials “thugs and “warmongers” Kim said North Korea has the “absolute weapon”. Yoon has vowed to complete the so-called “Kill Chain” system sooner rather than later. The Kill Chain is a system to carry out a preemptive strike against Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile facilities if Seoul is faced with an imminent threat, while the Korean Air and Missile Defense (KAMD) would trace and shoot down North Korean ballistic missiles heading for South Korea. The Korea Massive Punishment and Retaliation(KMPR) would be used to punish and retaliate against North Korea if it strikes South Korea. The “Kill Chain” system is supposed to be operational by 2025.
“Such a dangerous attempt will immediately be punished by a powerful force, and Yoon Suk-yeol’s government and his army will be annihilated,” he said, if South Korea decides to activate the “Kill Chain”.
North Korea in recent months has tested hypersonic missiles and missiles that it says could carry tactical nuclear weapons, halving the time that Seoul would have to respond to an imminent attack.
Blue House expressed deep regret over Kim’s “menacing” remarks, saying South Korea is capable of “strongly and effectively” responding to any provocations at any time.
“We once again urge North Korea to take the path of dialogue to achieve substantive denuclearisation and peace,” Yoon’s spokeswoman Kang In-sun told a briefing.