North Korea yesterday slammed the US, South Korea and Japan for pushing to boost their trilateral military cooperation targeting the North, warning that the move is prompting urgent calls for the country to reinforce its military capability.
The statement came as North Korea’s neighbors say the country is ready for its first nuclear test in five years as part of its provocative run of weapons tests this year.
“The prevailing situation more urgently calls for building up the country’s defense to actively cope with the rapid aggravation of the security environment of the Korean Peninsula and the rest of the world,” the North Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement, without elaborating how it would boost its military capacity.
The statement took issue with a trilateral meeting among the US, South Korean and Japanese leaders on the sidelines of a NATO summit last week, during which they underscored the need to strengthen their cooperation to deal with North Korean nuclear threats.
“The chief executives of the US, Japan and South Korea put their heads together for confrontation with [North Korea] and discussed the dangerous joint military countermeasures against it including the launch of tripartite joint military exercises,” the statement said.
It accused the US of exaggerating rumors about North Korean threats “to provide an excuse for attaining military supremacy over the Asia-Pacific region including the Korean Peninsula.”
North Korea claimed the recent NATO summit proves an alleged US plan to contain Russia and China by achieving the “militarization of Europe” and forming a NATO-like alliance in Asia.
It said “the reckless military moves of the US and its vassal forces” could lead to dangerous consequences such as a nuclear war simultaneously taking place in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region.
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