North Korea slammed South Korea and the United States over their recent summertime joint military drill, vowing to strengthen "war deterrence" strong enough to counter and remove any external threats.
The North's foreign ministry issued the criticism in a statement Sunday as Seoul and Washington concluded the combined military exercise last Thursday, which was held in a scaled-back manner due to the coronavirus situation and peace efforts involving North Korea.
"The exercise of invasive war by the US and South Korea has keenly reminded us again of the need to continue to strengthen our national defense and preemptive capabilities strong enough to cope with and remove external threats," the ministry said.
"We will endlessly accumulate our war deterrence as we will triumph over ever-growing military threats from the US and stand up to recklessly rampant hostile forces on the principle of power for power," it added.
North Korea has angrily responded to the recent joint military drill. Earlier, Kim Yo-jong, the sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, issued a statement and slammed the drill as an "unwelcoming act of self-destruction for which a dear price should be paid."
North Korea has also not responded to the South's regular phone calls via liaison and military hotlines since Aug. 10, when a preliminary exercise kicked off in the run-up to the nine-day summertime drill.
On Monday, the unification ministry in Seoul said the latest criticism appears to be in line with Kim Yo-jong's earlier statement but stressed the importance of continued efforts to prevent tensions on the Korean Peninsula from rising under any circumstances. (Yonhap)