North Korea has threatened to take “quick, overwhelming action” after the United States flew a nuclear-capable B-52 bomber over the Korean Peninsula in an exercise with South Korean warplanes.
Kim Yo Jong, the sister of North Korean president, Kim Jong-Un, made the threat as the U.S. and South Korea continue to carry out joint military exercises.
“We keep our eye on the restless military moves by the U.S. forces and the South Korean puppet military and are always on standby to take appropriate, quick and overwhelming action at any time according to our judgment,” Kim Yo Jong said in the statement, as reported by state media.
She added, “The demonstrative military moves and all sorts of rhetoric by the U.S. and South Korea, which go so extremely frantic as not to be overlooked, undoubtedly provide (North Korea) with conditions for being forced to do something to cope with them.”
North Korea’s Foreign Ministry also condemned the flyover that occurred on Monday and Tuesday.
In another statement, an unnamed ministry official called it a reckless provocation that pushes the peninsula “deeper into the bottomless quagmire.”
The statement added: “There is no guarantee that there will be no violent physical conflict” if the joint military exercises continue.
South Korea’s Defense Ministry defended the use of the B-52’s deployment in Monday’s training, saying it demonstrated the capabilities of the U.S. and South Korea to deter North Korean aggressions.
This is not the first time the U.S. has sent a long-range B-1B bomber or multiple B-1Bs to the peninsula.
The joint military exercises were cancelled or scaled back during previous diplomatic attempts and amid the COVID-19 pandemic. They have since ramped up, especially in light of North Korea bolstering its ballistic missile program and conducting a record number of missile tests and openly threatening to use its nuclear weapons.