North Korea 'ready to punish' U.S., South Korea for condemning missile tests

Maintaining its right to conduct missile launches, North Korea lashed out against criticism from the U.S. and South Korea that its actions are "provocative" and a "threat," and warned Washington and Seoul that North Korean forces were "ready to punish" those who oppose its missile launches.
By JC Finley Follow @JC_Finley Contact the Author   |   July 21, 2014 at 12:37 PM
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PYONGYANG, North Korea, July 21 (UPI) -- North Korea warned Sunday that it is "ready to punish" those who oppose its missile tests.

In a statement carried by state-run Korean Central News Agency on Monday, the North Korean National Defense Commission criticized the U.S. and South Korea for its opposition to what the North maintains are routine military drills.

"The U.S. and the South Korean authorities should no longer behave recklessly, daring talk about 'provocation' and 'threat' from someone," the NDC stated.

If such opposition to North Korean missile tests continues, warned the NDC, North Korean troops will "keep themselves fully ready to punish all undesirable forces in the world, strikingly demonstrate its invincible might and strongly counter their moves through their practical retaliatory actions of justice."

North Korea re-asserted its sovereign right to conduct missile launches earlier in the month. The state-run Rodong Sinmun newspaper wrote on July 6: "It is the inviolable legitimate exercise of the sovereignty that the DPRK has bolstered up its deterrence force for self-defense to defend the security and peace of the country and firmly safeguard the gains of the revolution."

On Thursday, the United Nations Security Council condemned North Korea for launching three rounds of Scud short-range ballistic missiles on June 29, July 9 and July 13, noting that the launches were in violation of Security Council resolutions.

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