(LEAD) N. Korean military postures for war against U.S. nuclear-powered carrier
(ATTN: CHANGES headline; ADDS more info in paras 5-10)
SEOUL, Oct. 8 (Yonhap) -- All North Korean troops have been placed on an emergency posture to launch operations any time against U.S.-led defense drills off the peninsula, the communist nation's state news agency reported Tuesday.
The General Staff of the Korean People's Army took issue in particular with the deployment of the USS George Washington, a nuclear-powered carrier, for the joint exercises with South Korea and Japan.
"This clearly proves that the remarks of such high-ranking officials of the U.S. Obama administration as the secretary of state that the U.S. neither pursues a hostile policy towards the DPRK (North Korea) nor has the will to attack it are sheer lies," an unnamed spokesman for the military body said in an English-version statement, according to the Korean Central News Agency.
In this connection, it added, the entire North Korean military received an "emergency order from its supreme command to re-examine the operation plans already ratified by it and keep themselves fully ready to promptly launch operations any time, watching with high vigilance every move of the U.S. and Japanese aggressors and the puppet forces."
The spokesman warned the U.S. that "the more frequently and the deeper its imperialist aggression forces' nuclear strike means, including the nuclear carrier, enter the air above the vicinity of the Korean Peninsula and waters off it, the more unpredictable disasters their actions will cause," adding that the U.S. will be "wholly accountable" for them.
If Washington wants denuclearization of the peninsula, it "should make a decision to move first," according to the statement.
The George Washington aircraft carrier entered the port of Busan, a South Korea southern port city, on Friday for the three-day joint naval drills among South Korea, the U.S. and Japan, planned to start on Tuesday in the southern waters of the peninsula. The military exercise, however, was delayed due to bad weather.
Experts said this statement seems to be part of the North's efforts to ratchet up pressure on the U.S. over the resumption of the long-stalled six-party talks for denuclearizing North Korea.
China is increasing efforts to revive the disarmament-for-aid talks involving the four countries plus Japan and Russia, but the U.S. has shown reservations, citing a lack of seriousness from Pyongyang.
A South Korean military official confirmed the military order in the North, saying, "We are closely watching the movement of the North Korean military."
- U.S. aircraft carrier makes port call in S. Korea 2013/10/04 10:30
- (LEAD) S. Korea, U.S., Japan to carry out joint naval drills next week 2013/10/02 18:35
- Typhoon delays naval drill involving S. Korea, U.S., Japan 2013/10/08 08:51