North Korean leader Kim Jong-un ‘satisfied’ with mock ‘nuclear counterattack’
It was indeed Pyongyang’s fourth show of force in a week. The ballistic missile launch reported over the weekend by the South Korean army was confirmed Monday, March 20, by the North Korean state agency, KCNA.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un led military drills Saturday and Sunday around shifting to a nuclear counterattack posture, as well as a drill “launch of a tactical ballistic missile equipped with a dummy nuclear warhead”according to KCNA. “The missile was fitted with a test warhead simulating a nuclear warhead”said the agency later, without giving further details.
Kim Jong-un expressed his ” satisfaction “ after this weekend of exercises, according to KCNA, organized for “to allow relevant units to familiarize themselves with the procedures and processes for implementing their tactical nuclear attack missions”.
The leader said the drills on Saturday and Sunday instilled a “great confidence” to North Korean military units, according to KCNA. According to him, North Korea “cannot really deter a war by the mere fact that it is a state [doté] nuclear weapons”and the country will only be able to achieve its objectives “when the nuclear force is perfected [pour devenir] a means actually capable of carrying out an attack against the enemy”.
“Serious provocation”, according to Seoul
Seoul’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said the short-range ballistic missile fired by Pyongyang on Sunday flew 800 kilometers before falling into the East Sea, also known as the Sea of Japan. According to the South Korean military, it is a “serious provocation” violating United Nations sanctions. The American and South Korean intelligence services are carrying out analyses. Tokyo also condemned the shooting, as did the US military command in the region.
These test firings take place at a time when Seoul and Washington are conducting their largest joint military exercises for five years, dubbed “Freedom Shield” and lasting eleven days. North Korea regards all such exercises as rehearsals for an invasion of its territory and has repeatedly warned that it will respond to them in a “overwhelming”.
Washington and Seoul have strengthened their defense cooperation in the face of growing military and nuclear threats from Pyongyang, which has increased weapons tests in recent months.
United Front of South Korea and Japan
On Thursday, Pyongyang fired its Hwasong-17 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), the most powerful in its arsenal, in the presence of leader Kim Jong-un and his daughter, and just before a visit to Japan by the southern president. -Korean, Yoon Suk Yeol. Cold for years due to a historic dispute, the two neighbors have resumed language at the highest level and decided to present a united front against North Korea.
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It was Pyongyang’s second ICBM test this year, which KCNA said at the time was a response to military drills “frantic” from South Korea and the United States. The firing itself came after the launch Tuesday of two short-range ballistic missiles and, on March 12, two strategic cruise missiles from a submarine.
The United Nations Security Council is due to hold a meeting on Monday about the ICBM launch at the request of Washington and Tokyo, according to the Yonhap news agency.
In 2022, Pyongyang called“irreversible” its status as a nuclear power. Mr. Kim recently called for an exponential increase in his production of weapons, including tactical nuclear weapons. At the beginning of March, he also ordered his army to intensify its military maneuvers in view of a “real war”.