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28 Dec, 2023 11:49

North Korea calls for ‘acceleration’ of war preparation

Kim Jong-un said Pyongyang would expand ties with “anti-imperialist countries” in response to aggression from the US and its allies
North Korea calls for ‘acceleration’ of war preparation

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has said that Pyongyang must increase its war preparedness amid what he referred to as “unprecedented” acts of confrontation against the country by the United States, according to state media.

Speaking at Pyongyang’s end-of-year meeting of the ruling Workers’ Party on Wednesday, Kim called upon various sectors – including nuclear weapons, munitions, and civil defense – to “further accelerate the war preparations,” according to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

“[Kim] set forth the militant tasks for the People’s Army and the munitions industry, nuclear weapons, and civil defense sectors to further accelerate the war preparations,” the agency added.

Kim also warned that the “military situation” on the Korean peninsula had become “extreme” because of “unprecedented” confrontational moves by the United States and its regional allies. In response to these threats, Kim also said that Pyongyang would expand its strategic cooperations with “anti-imperialist independent” countries, the KCNA report added.

At last year’s year-end meeting, Kim said that Pyongyang must exponentially “increase the country’s nuclear arsenal.”

Washington, along with Seoul and Tokyo, has increased military drills over the past several months following a series of weapons tests by Pyongyang this year. Earlier in December, the United States deployed a nuclear-powered submarine to the South Korean port city of Busan and conducted long-range bomber drills with Tokyo and Seoul.

Pyongyang has described such joint military exercises as “intentional nuclear war provocative moves of the US.” 

In November, North Korea successfully launched a spy reconnaissance satellite, which led to the suspension of a 2018 military accord on the peninsula – the Comprehensive Military Agreement (CMA). Under the terms of the agreement, the North and South – who remain technically at war – had agreed to “completely cease all hostile acts against each other.”

This year, Pyongyang also enshrined its status as a nuclear power into its constitution and tested its most advanced intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

In addition to detailing North Korea’s military and defensive objectives, Kim also outlined Pyongyang’s economic and agricultural goals. He said it was a “decisive year” for the country’s five-year development plan and called for “stabilizing the agricultural production on a high level.”