N. Korea gears up to celebrate birthday of country's founder
N. Korea gears up to celebrate birthday of country's founder
Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un
13 May, 2017, 10:14
Kim Jong Un (R), supreme leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), waves as he reviews the grand celebrations marking the 105th birth anniversary of DPRK founder Kim Il Sung in central Pyongyang, April 15, 2017.
Choe, who is believed to be the second-most powerful official in North Korea, further stated that the new USA government under Donald Trump was "creating a war situation" on the Korean Peninsula by dispatching strategic military assets to the region.
North Korea warned on Friday that "if the U.S. wages reckless provocation against us, our revolutionary power will instantly counter with an annihilating strike", in retaliation to the Trump administration's recent insinuations that it might be considering military action against it.
As tensions between North Korea and the USA rose in recent days, speculation had grown that Kim Jong Un would conduct a nuclear test or other major military test. It has warned of a nuclear attack on the United States in retaliation for any sign of aggression.
Speaking to the Associated Press in an interview Friday, North Korea's vice foreign minister said that any sign of "reckless" military aggression on the part of the US could lead Pyongyang to launch a preemptive strike of its own.
North Korea's vice foreign minister Han Song Ryol toldThe Associated Press on Friday that "Trump is always making provocations with his aggressive words".
"All the brigandish provocative moves of the U.S.in the political, economic and military fields pursuant to its hostile policy toward the DPRK will thoroughly be foiled through the toughest counteraction of the army and people of the DPRK", the North's KCNA state news agency said, citing a spokesman for the General Staff of the Korean People's Army.
A US military official, who requested anonymity to discuss planning, said the United States doesn't intend to use military force against North Korea in response to either a nuclear test or a missile launch. China is North Korea's main trading partner and Chinese companies produce military components for the North.
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Meanwhile, pictures on state television showed thousands of soldiers marching in the parade alongside tanks, balloons and enormous crowds, CNN reported.
It was also a bold display for enemies such as the United States. An official from South Korea's Defense Ministry couldn't immediately confirm whether any of the rockets represented a new type of ICBM.
Satellite images released on Thursday purportedly showed advanced preparations for a potential nuclear test at Punggye-ri in North Korea. The government also showcased two established ballistic missiles, one for submarines and one for on-land use.
The event also paraded what appeared to be a new intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
However, experts were still analysing features of this new projectile, which could yet turn out to be just a model, as analysts have said in the past the North sometimes presents mock-ups of missiles that are still under development.
It comes amid speculation that the current leader, Kim Jong-un, could order another nuclear test.
North Korea recently test-fired four ballistic missiles and claims it's close to perfecting an intercontinental ballistic missile and nuclear warhead capable of reaching the USA mainland. Despite Beijing's key role in propping up North Korea, the Kim Jong-Un regime has repeatedly ignored warnings and sanctions from its powerful ally. But there had been fears that the isolated country would mark the Day of the Sun by conducting a nuclear test - in defiance of USA warnings not to.
Moreover, the North has taken the recent deployment of a USA naval strike group to the region as grounds for its continued testing of nuclear and missile weapons technologies.
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