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  • » 03/27/2013, 00.00

    KOREA

    Pyongyang threatens war, cuts lines to Seoul

    Joseph Yun Li-sun

    After putting its combat units on a state of alert and aimed missiles at US bases in Guam and Hawaii, North Korea cuts its last direct line of communication with South Korea since "war may break out at any moment" making "north-south military communications" no longer necessary.

    Seoul (AsiaNews) - As tensions escalate, North Korea announced that it had cut off a "military hotline" with South Korea, and that "war may break out at any moment". In view of this, "there is no need to keep north-south military communications". Overnight, a South Korean soldier standing on guard at the tense inter-Korean border threw a grenade after he heard noises.

    Pyongyang appears determined to push ahead with military provocation. After South Korea and the United States held a series of joint military exercises and the United Nations approved a new round of economic sanctions against North Korea, Kim Jong-un's regime disconnected a Red Cross hotline routed through the village of Panmunjom. Previously, it had threatened to launch a ruthless pre-emptive nuclear attack against Washington and Seoul.

    With today's decision to cut the hotline, "The Supreme Command of the Korean People's Army solemnly declared that" due "to the reckless acts of the enemies, the north-south military communications which were set up for dialogue and cooperation between the north and the south has already lost its significance," North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported. Since "war may break out any moment, there is no need to keep North-South military communications."

    North Korea's attempt to undermine the international consensus against its nuclear programme, backed by Beijing, is also illustrated by its ruling Workers' Party of Korea's plenary meeting of top party leaders this month "to discuss and decide an important issue".

    The party usually meets once a year to ratify the decisions taken by the leadership. The plenary session of the Party's Central Committee at the end of this month is expected to "discuss and decide an important issue in order to victoriously advance the Korean revolution and take a decisive turn in achieving the Juche revolutionary cause under the banner of great Kimilsungism-Kimjongilism," KCNA reported.

    Juche is an ideology of economic self-reliance that combines Communism, Stalinism, nationalism and a version of neo-Confucianism developed under Kim Il-sung at the beginning of his revolution.

    The party meeting comes just days before the annual session of the Supreme People's Assembly, which is scheduled for 1 April in Pyongyang, ahead of 11 April, first anniversary of the day when the "young general" Kim Jong-un became First Secretary of the Workers' Party of Korea.

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    See also

    25/01/2013 NORTH KOREA
    As it lashes out at everybody, Pyongyang threatens Seoul and Beijing
    North Korea slams the UN for imposing new sanctions. Following its usual tirade against South Korea's "puppet" regime, Pyongyang goes after China for buckling under US pressures. China responds by sending a tough warning that it "will not hesitate to reduce its assistance to North Korea".

    13/06/2005 SOUTH KOREA - NORTH KOREA
    South Korea's Roh "very sure" nuclear talks will resume
    In his recent meeting with George Bush, Roh insisted on the need to offer Pyongyang concrete proposals rather than threaten it with international sanctions.

    23/10/2006 SOUTH KOREA – NORTH KOREA – CHINA
    Ban Ki-moon should pay special attention to human rights in North Korea
    Human rights groups present the next United Nations secretary general with a joint petition on the eve of his departure for Beijing. International sanctions continue against the Communist regime.

    20/07/2005 JAPAN – NORTH KOREA
    Tokyo to demand total nuclear power ban on Pyongyang
    Government sources say Japan will ask for a total freeze on North Korea's nuclear energy programme during six-nation talks.

    27/07/2009 KOREA
    Pyongyang ready for new talks, but with the U.S.
    According to the North Korean ambassador to the UN, the terms of the 6 party talks - started in 2003 – have expired. Washington and Seoul reaffirm that the 6 party talks are the only way forward for the regime now isolated from everyone.



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