Seoul | North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said his country is “ready to deploy” its nuclear deterrent force in the event of a future military clash with the United States and South Korea, state media reported Thursday.
“Our country’s nuclear deterrent is also ready to reliably, accurately and rapidly mobilize its absolute power in accordance with its mission,” Kim Jong Un said in a speech on Wednesday, according to the official Korean Central News Agency, Pyongyang’s branch.
He added that the country’s armed forces are “fully prepared” to “confront any military confrontation with the United States,” speaking to veterans of the 1950-53 Korean War on the occasion of the “Victory Day” celebrations of the armistice declaration.
In June, the US and South Korea threatened a “quick” response with more sanctions and even a review of the US “military posture” in the event of a new nuclear test by North Korea.
This week, the US military conducted a live-fire exercise in South Korea with Apache attack helicopters for the first time since 2019.
Kim Jong-un also criticized neo-conservative South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol, who took office in May and vowed to be tougher with his northern neighbor.
“Talking about military action against our nation, which has absolute weapons that they fear most, is absurd and is a very dangerous act of self-destruction,” Kim Jong Un said of Mr. Yoon’s government. “Gangsters”.
He threatened, “Such a dangerous attempt will be immediately punished by our mighty power, and Yoon Seok Yeol’s government and army will be wiped out.”
“Kim’s rhetoric exaggerates external threats to justify his regime’s focus on military spending in a struggling economy,” said Leif Eric Easley, a professor at the University of Ewa in Seoul.
“North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs violate international law, but Kim is trying to portray its development of destabilizing weapons as a valid self-defense effort,” he added.