North Korea says South should cancel drill with US

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North Korea says South should cancel drill with US NewsLineToday    Gallery Enlarge Image

Manju Shukla
Date  14/08/2014

North Korea has warned South Korea that its upcoming military exercise with the United States would push the two neighbors to the ‘brink of war.’

In a statement on Thursday, the North Korean Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of Korea (CPRK) said the joint military drill “should be cancelled unconditionally” if Seoul is “sincere” about improving relations.

The annual Ulchi-Freedom Guardian drill, which is scheduled to take place on August 18, is expected to involve between 400,000 and 500,000 US and South Korean forces.

The North Korean statement added that the military exercise would push the “Korean Peninsula to the brink of a war and increase the danger of a nuclear war.”

Earlier this month, Pyongyang called on the UN Security Council to hold an emergency session over the joint military drill.

“As long as the US is continuing with provocative, aggressive joint military exercises on the Korean Peninsula, the counter actions for self-defensive nature by the DPRK (North Korea) will become annual and routine,” said North Korea’s Deputy Ambassador to the UN Ri Tong Il.

Ri also accused Washington of engaging in “nuclear blackmail” by bringing nuclear-armed submarines to South Korea.

He further accused the UN Security Council of double standards, saying the council condemns Pyongyang’s ballistic missile tests, but ignores provocative exercises off the Korean Peninsula by Washington and Seoul.

Pyongyang says that the drills are practice for invasion, and that North Korea will take additional measures to demonstrate its might as long as threats from the United States persist.

North Korea fired some short-range missiles in a show of force against the recently held military drills between Seoul and Washington. The two-month-long exercises, finished on April 18, involved nearly 13,000 US forces and some 200,000 South Korean troops.

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