North Korean military officials confirmed Monday that their recent missile tests were intended as a practice to “mercilessly” hit South Korean and American targets, as the East Asian country signals its intention to attack military bases and operational command systems.
The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) escalated geopolitical tensions by launching dozens of rockets at the sea last week in spite of recent US-South Korean air force exercises. DPRK missile tests have triggered evacuations in some Japanese and South Korean areas.
“The recent corresponding military operations of the Korean People’s Army are a clear response (North Korea) that the more persistently they continue the provocative military moves of the enemies, the more completely and mercilessly the KPA will oppose them,” the North Korean General Staff said. the army said in a statement released by the state media.
Korean People’s Army (KPA) military officials confirmed that one of the missiles tested had a special functional warhead tasked with “paralyzing the enemy’s operational command system”.
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The military announcement reflects Kim Jong Un’s determination not to back down against US and South Korean forces. The two countries issued a joint statement on Thursday, warning that any nuclear attack would potentially end Kim’s rule.
“Any nuclear attack against the United States or its allies and partners, including the use of non-strategic nuclear weapons, is unacceptable and will result in the end of the Kim regime,” South Korean Defense Minister Jong-Sup Lee said.
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The North Korean military did not mention any plans to strike the US mainland on Monday. According to experts, nearly all North Korean missiles launched last week were likely nuclear-capable, short-range weapons, putting US military bases in South Korea within range.
“The KPA general staff makes it clear once again that it will continue to match all war drills against the enemy’s (North Korea) with sustained, resolute and overwhelming practical military measures,” a statement read.
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Military exercises have increased since South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol took office in May. The conservative leader has taken a tougher stance on North Korean provocations.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.