North Korea Tells Military to 'Mercilessly Wipe Out' Their Enemies in Case of War
March 14, 2012
North Korea's new leader Kim Jong-Un has overseen an attack drill and ordered the military to "mercilessly wipe out" their enemies in case of war, according to Pyongyang's official news agency.
The agency in a report dated Wednesday did not say when or where Kim launched the "combined strike drill" by the army, navy and air force, which comes amid high tension with South Korea.
Many of the country's top military and civilian officials attended the exercise, which featured a simulated attack by planes, ships and artillery on enemy warships.
Kim was officially appointed supreme commander of the 1.2 million-member military after taking over the national leadership following the death of his father Kim Jong-Il on December 17.
His regime has agreed a surprise nuclear deal with the United States but has taken a consistently hostile tone with the South's conservative government.
It has several times threatened a "sacred" war against the South over perceived insults to the North's ruling dynasty, and Kim has toured a series of frontline military units.
Kim accused the North's enemies of awaiting a chance to make a surprise attack, the news agency said. He ordered troops "to mercilessly wipe out the enemies with arms of justice and revenge once they go into action".
South Korean troops are also planning a major military exercise. It will be held near the disputed Yellow Sea border late this month to mark the second anniversary of the sinking of one of Seoul's warships.
The South accused its neighbour of torpedoing the corvette on March 26, 2010, with the loss of 46 lives. The North denied responsibility but shelled a South Korean border island eight months later, killing four people.
South Korean and US troops are already conducting a separate annual field exercise known as "Foal Eagle". The North says such drills are rehearsals for invasion.
The South has ordered troops to stay vigilant before dozens of national leaders including US President Barack Obama gather for a Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul on March 26-27.
March 18, 2012
North Korea on Sunday rejected criticism of its planned long-range missile launch which threatens to upset its only major benefactor, China, and put relations with the United States back in the freezer just as they seemed to be starting to thaw.
Political analysts say the launch, which would violate U.N. resolutions on the heavily sanctioned state, is aimed at boosting the legitimacy of its young new ruler Kim Jong-un who inherited power after his father's death in December.
"The peaceful development and use of space is a universally recognized legitimate right of a sovereign state," the North's state KCNA news agency said.
North Korea says it is using the rocket to launch a satellite to mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of Kim Il-sung, the country's founding ruler and grandfather of the current ruler.
The United States, and others, say it is much the same as a ballistic missile test and therefore off-limits for the isolated state which has for years been trying to build a nuclear arsenal.
Washington, which last month agreed to supply North Korea with food in exchange for a suspension of nuclear tests, missile launches and uranium enrichment and to allow nuclear inspectors into the country, called the planned launch "highly provocative".
More troubling perhaps for Pyongyang, which is long accustomed to trading invective with Washington, Beijing called the planned launch a "worry" in a rare attempt to put public pressure on its impoverished ally.
The North has invited foreign observers and journalists to attend the launch.
It announced the planned launch on Friday just weeks after the deal with Washington. It will coincide with the 100th anniversary of the birth of its founder Kim Il-sung.
In April 2009, North Korea conducted a ballistic rocket launch that resulted in a new round of U.N. sanctions, squeezing the secretive state's already troubled economy and deepening its isolation.
That launch was dismissed as a failure after the first stage fell into the Sea of Japan without placing a satellite in orbit. Another test failed in similar circumstances in 1998.
The new launch is due to take place between April 12-16, to coincide with Kim Il-sung's centenary celebrations and will coincide with parliamentary elections in South Korea.
Japan has said it would consider deploying PAC3 missile interceptors as it did in a 2009 launch by North Korea.