North Korea issued a warning to the United States and South Korea to cancel joint military exercises scheduled for February through April, threatening that the continuation of the drills would have dire consequences.
North Korea's propagandizing Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland issued the warning in a statement released by the North Korean Central News Agency.
"(North Korea) sternly warns the United States and South Korea to halt any military drills that will ruin the inter-Korean relations... The northbound nuclear war drills, if carried out, will fatally destroy the inter-Korean relations and trigger unimaginable calamities and disasters."
A North Committee spokesperson also noted in the statement that the planned U.S.-South Korea military drills equate to a declaration of "full scale nuclear war."
South Korean Ministry of Defense spokesperson Kim Min-Seok responded to the North's warning, telling reporters "If North Korea commits military provocations by taking advantage of these routine exercises... the military will retaliate severely and firmly."
Threats from North Korea over the annual U.S.-South Korea joint military exercises are routine.
[Yonhap News Agency] [The Economic Times]