North Korea has threatened “swift, heavy action” after it flew a nuclear-capable B-52 bomber over the Korean Peninsula in an exercise with South Korean warplanes.
Kim Yo Jong, sister of dictator Kim Jong-un, threatened as the US and South Korea are holding joint military exercises.
Kim Yo Jong said in the statement, “We keep our eyes on the restless military moves by the US military and the South Korean puppet army and stand ready to take appropriate, prompt and forceful action at any time.” As reported by state media.
“The demonstrative military moves and all kinds of rhetoric by the US and South Korea, which are too hysterical to ignore, undoubtedly provide (North Korea) a compelling position to do something to deal with them,” he said. Are. “
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North Korea’s foreign ministry also condemned the flyover.
In a separate statement, an unnamed ministry official called it a reckless provocation that pushes the peninsula “deeper into a bottomless quagmire”.
The statement added: “There is no guarantee that there will be no violent physical conflict” if the joint military exercises continue.
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South Korea’s defense ministry defended the use of the B-52 deployment in Monday’s training, saying it demonstrated the capabilities of the US and South Korea to deter North Korean aggression.
This was not the first time the US has sent long-range B-1B bombers or multiple B-1Bs to the peninsula.
The joint military exercises, which North Korea describes as a “provocation”, were canceled or scaled back during previous diplomatic efforts and amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, there has been a rapid escalation, especially in light of North Korea boosting its ballistic missile program, conducting a record number of missile tests and openly threatening to use its nuclear weapons.
Last Friday, the South Korean and US armies initially announced they would reinstate their springtime field exercises and hold computer-simulated command post training from March 13-23. The massive springtime exercise was previously canceled in 2018 by former President Donald Trump.
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Last month, Kim Yo Jong said North Korea would continue its missile tests even as his country turned the Pacific into a missile firing range. On Tuesday, he reiterated that North Korea would consider any US attempt to intercept one of its intercontinental ballistic missiles as a declaration of war.
North Korea has so far used sharp angles in its ICBM tests to avoid the perception of launching missiles at neighboring countries. The weapons later landed in the waters between the Korean Peninsula and Japan.
Earlier this week, South Korea announced an agreement with Japan to ease a historic dispute and boost trilateral Seoul-Tokyo-Washington security cooperation.
The plan involved Japan using local money to compensate Koreans who had been forced into forced labor during Tokyo’s colonial rule.
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Rahm Emmanuel, the US ambassador to Japan, commended the leaders of South Korea and Japan, saying “the potential for cooperation in the future is more important and has more value and realizing that you have to deal with historical issues.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report
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