Last updated on March 9th, 2023 at 02:28 pm
North Korea stated on March 7 that any attempt to shoot down one of its test missiles would be regarded a declaration of war, and blamed a joint military exercise between the United States and South Korea for escalating tensions.
Kim Yo Jong, the influential sister of leader Kim Jong Un, said in a statement that Pyongyang would view any action against the North’s strategic nuclear tests as a “declaration of war.”
In addition, she implied that the North may launch other missiles into the Pacific Ocean. The United States and its allies have never intercepted North Korean ballistic missiles, which are prohibited by the United Nations Security Council, but the issue has received renewed attention since the North said it may launch additional missiles over Japan.
Kim stated, “The Pacific Ocean does not fall within the jurisdiction of the United States or Japan.”
Experts have stated that if North Korea follows through with its promise to use the Pacific Ocean as a “shooting range,” it will allow the nuclear-armed, isolating nation to achieve technological gains in addition to signaling its military might.
In a second statement, the head of North Korea’s Foreign Ministry’s Foreign Press Division accused the United States of “worsening” the situation by conducting a joint air practice with a B-52 bomber on Monday and organizing US-South Korea field drills.
In response, South Korea’s Unification Ministry, which oversees contacts with the North, blamed Pyongyang’s “reckless nuclear and missile development” for the worsening situation.
The United States deployed the B-52 bomber in a combined exercise with South Korean fighter jets, which the South Korean defense ministry interpreted as a show of force against North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats.
Beginning next week, the two countries will conduct over ten days of large-scale military exercises known as “Freedom Shield.”
Yonhap news agency said on Tuesday that US and South Korean jets conducted a rapid takeoff in response to North Korean threats to bomb airfields.
As a result of the 1950-1953 Korean War, which ended in an armistice rather than a peace treaty, leaving the countries nominally at war, approximately 28,500 YS troops are stationed in South Korea.