DPRK denounces US-ROK exercises as provocation

Updated: 2010-09-26 20:25
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PYONGYANG - The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) condemned the United States and the Republic of Korea (ROK) on Sunday for holding joint military exercises in the Yellow Sea on September 27-October 1, DPRK's official KCNA news agency reported.

In a statement issued on Sunday, the DPRK's Secretariat of the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of Korea described the exercises as "a military provocation to destroy the efforts for detente on the Korean Peninsula."

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The so-called anti-submarine exercises will "chill the mounting atmosphere of improved inter-Korean relations and aggravate the confrontation and the premeditated war maneuvers to ignite a nuclear war at any cost," said the statement.

The fact that Seoul is staging the military exercises with Washington at a time when the two Koreas are holding dialogues to settle the Red Cross humanitarian issue is "an intolerable mockery of its dialogue partner and challenge to it," the statement said.

It warned that the unprecedented exercises prove that the United States and ROK are "stepping up the preparations for a real war," stressing that the DPRK will "never pardon but wipe out any provocateurs."

According to reports, the US-ROK joint anti-submarine exercises will involve destroyers, submarines, patrol boats and patrol planes. Another US-ROK exercise will also be staged in the Yellow Sea in late October.

The United States and ROK have staged several large-scale military drills in Korean waters after the sinking of the "Cheonan" warship which killed 46 ROK sailors in March.