N. Korea Vows To Bolster Nuclear Deterrent

Seoul, North Korea pledged Saturday to strengthen its nuclear deterrent, the latest in a series of threats against South Korea and the United States over their annual military drills, Yonhap News Agency reported.

South Korea and the U.S. began their two-month long Foal Eagle exercise on Wednesday that involves the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier and the U.S. Air Force’s F-35B stealth fighter in a show of force against the North.

The two allies also plan to start a separate computer-simulated command post exercise on March 13 for a two-week run.

The North has frequently denounced South Korea-U.S. joint military exercises as a rehearsal for invasion.

“The army and people of the (North) are unshakable in their will to further bolster up the deterrence for self-defense with the strategic nuclear force as a pivot in order to put a radical end to the danger of a nuclear war being imposed by the U.S.,” an unidentified spokesman for North Korea’s Foreign Ministry said in an English-language statement carried by the North’s official Korean Central News Agency.

The spokesman also said North Korea will “deal a merciless retaliatory strike” at any provocation by the invaders.

North Korea’s latest threat came a day after North Korea threatened to conduct more missile tests in protest of the ongoing joint military exercise.

Source: Qatar News Agency