by Staff Writers
Seoul (AFP) Feb 23, 2016
North Korea on Tuesday lashed out at an upcoming joint US-South Korean military exercise, warning it would attack the South and the US mainland in case of any armed provocation.
The South and its close US ally will next month hold their largest-ever annual exercise in response to the North's recent nuclear test and long-range rocket launch, Seoul's defence ministry has announced.
The North's military supreme command said the allies planned to practise a "beheading operation" aimed at the North's leadership, and other moves to neutralise its nuclear weapons and missiles.
If there were even a "slight sign" of special forces moving to carry out such operations, the military said, "strategic and tactical" preemptive attacks would be launched.
The primary target would be the South's presidential Blue House, it said in a statement on the official news agency, condemning it as "the centre for hatching plots for confrontation with the fellow countrymen in the north, and reactionary ruling machines".
The North also threatened attacks on US bases in the Asia-Pacific and the mainland.
It said it has "the most powerful and ultra-modern strike means" in the world capable of "dealing fatal blows at the US mainland any moment and in any place".
Such blows would "reduce the cesspool of all evils to ashes, never to rise again on our planet", it added in a reference to the United States.
The North habitually claims that the annual Key Resolve/Foal Eagle exercise is a rehearsal for invasion while Seoul and Washington say it is purely defensive.
Tensions are high as the United Nations considers tougher sanctions against the North to punish it for January's nuclear test and this month's rocket launch.
The South, in an unprecedentedly tough move, has shut down a Seoul-financed and jointly-run industrial estate in the North, saying it was helping finance its neighbour's military programmes.
Learn about nuclear weapons doctrine and defense at SpaceWar.com
Learn about missile defense at SpaceWar.com
All about missiles at SpaceWar.com
Learn about the Superpowers of the 21st Century at SpaceWar.com
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|