7 mar 2023 1:04 p.m
The US and North Korea exchange serious threats. US forces’ Indo-Pacific Command ready to launch North Korean ballistic missiles Pyongyang counters that it would perceive such actions as a declaration of war.
Pyongyang warns Washington against attempts to shoot down North Korean ballistic missiles. As the sister of the head of state Kim Jong-un in a Tuesday from the agency KCNA published statement, the North Korean government would classify such US attempts as a “clear declaration of war”. Kim Yo-jong was quoted as saying:
“The Pacific Ocean does not belong to the United States or Japan.”
The director of North Korea’s Ministry of Propaganda and Agitation noted that it would be very interesting to see how the US would react if a third country tried to intercept its missiles. Kim’s sister pointed out that every year the US military conducts test launches of its strategic weapons in the Pacific as if the Pacific Ocean were its own yard. At the same time, the senior official stated that North Korean missile launches posed no threat to the security of neighboring countries.
The statement followed a South Korean media report in which the Commander of the US Forces Indo-Pacific Command, John Aquilino, issued a clear warning to the leadership in Pyongyang against missile launches towards the Pacific. Accordingly, the senior military said the US would try to intercept North Korean ICBMs immediately if North Korea fired such missiles in the direction of the Pacific Ocean.
Tensions are mounting
Against this background, Washington and Seoul conducted aerial maneuvers over the Yellow Sea this Monday. In addition to F-15K and KF-16 fighter planes, a B-52H bomber capable of nuclear weapons was also involved. According to the South Korean military, this action was intended to demonstrate the allies’ ability and determination to respond to growing threats from North Korea’s missile and nuclear programs.
Further large-scale maneuvers by South Korea and the USA are to take place in the region in the near future. They are called Freedom Shield and will take place from March 13th to 23rd. Their goal is to strengthen allies’ defense capabilities in the face of the changing security environment, said Colonel Isaac Taylor, spokesman for the US Forces in South Korea (USFK).
For its part, the leadership in Pyongyang accuses the US government of deliberately allowing the situation in the region to escalate. The threat of nuclear war on the Korean peninsula is now becoming more of a realistic scenario because of the irresponsible actions of the US and South Korea, according to the North Korean foreign ministry.
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