Nov. 13 (UPI) -- North Korea warned the United States Wednesday against engaging in joint exercises with South Korea, as a pro-Pyongyang newspaper in Japan said a deadline looms for U.S.-North Korea talks.
Pyongyang's state affairs commission said in a statement joint drills could exacerbate the situation on the Korean Peninsula, and that "careless actions" of the United States could compel North Korea on a "new path," South Korean news agency Yonhap reported.
Washington and Seoul have significantly reduced the number of joint exercises held on and around the peninsula since Kim Jong Un met with U.S. President Donald Trump in February. Pyongyang suggested Wednesday the reductions might not be sufficient for improved relations.
The state affairs commission said any planned exercises could become the "main factor" in inevitably raising tensions.
"In a sensitive time when the situation of the Korean Peninsula may go back to its original state, it is better for the United States to refrain from acting carelessly," Pyongyang said.
North Korea also said the renamed "19-1 alliance exercises" held in March and August, and the assessment of initial operational capability are an "act of betrayal, paying back good with evil."
The statement from Pyongyang came the same day the Japan-based Choson Sinbo newspaper reported the next U.S.-North Korea summit must take place by the end of 2019. If the deadline is not met, "the opportunity for dialogue disappears," the newspaper said.
The report also said North Korea's test of a submarine-launched ballistic missile, the Pukguksong-3, was a display of nuclear power that urged the United States to make the "wise choice."
U.S. and South Korean military officials have not responded to the North Korean statements.
Officials of both sides met in Seoul on Wednesday, including retired U.S. General Walter Sharpe, the former commander of U.S. Forces Korea, Newsis reported.
Deterring and defending against North Korea is an important mission, officials said.
South Korean Defense Minister Jeong Kyeong-doo attended the meeting affirming "friendship" between the two sides, according to the report.