North Korea is prepared to mobilize its deterrents in the event of a nuclear war, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un announced in a speech at an event marking the anniversary of the Korean War, the official KCNA news agency reported, citing the BBC.
Kim Jong-un added that the country is “fully prepared for a military confrontation” with the United States. The remarks come at a time when there are fears North Korea could be preparing a seventh nuclear test.
The U.S. warned last month that Pyongyang could conduct such a test at any time. North Korea’s last nuclear test took place in 2017. However, tensions on the Korean Peninsula have increased.
According to U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Sung Kim, North Korea has tested more missiles this year than ever before – 31 compared to 25 in 2019, when the previous high was reached. In June, South Korea responded by firing eight of its own missiles. Although the 1950-1953 Korean War ended in an armistice, North Korea calls it a victory over the United States.
Annually, “Victory Day” is celebrated with military parades, fireworks and dancing. In his speech to mark the occasion, Kim said North Korea must perform the “urgent historical task” of strengthening its self-defense because of the U.S. nuclear threat. The U.S. has misrepresented North Korea’s regular military exercises as provocations, he added.