Skip to main content

North Korea issues threat to U.S. military

By Ben Brumfield and KJ Kwon, CNN
February 23, 2013 -- Updated 1413 GMT (2213 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The message was delivered over the phone in English, reports say
  • Such threat happen routinely before U.S.-South Korean exercises
  • The exercises come in the wake of a recent nuclear test in North Korea
  • South Korea's military is already in a state of heightened alert

(CNN) -- Ahead of annual, routine military exercises between South Korea and the United States, North Korea issued its usual caustic objections Saturday.

It threatened "miserable destruction," if "your side ignites a war of aggression by staging the reckless joint military exercises ... at this dangerous time."

Though customary, the stark posturing by North Korea stands in the shadow of an underground nuclear test two weeks ago that was preceded by the launch of a long-range missile capable of transporting a warhead.

The detonation of the nuclear charge was the third in Pyongyang's history and the first under supreme leader Kim Jong Un's rule. South Korea's military reacted with fierce military drills, including a public display of newly deployed cruise missiles with pinpoint accuracy.

It has been on heightened readiness ever since.

North Korea's nuclear ambitions
What exactly is North Korea capable of?
What North Koreans think about tests

The test also triggered a global wave of condemnation, including from Beijing, and plans for new sanctions against Pyongyang.

North Korea issued the objections to exercises Key Resolve and Foal Eagle scheduled for March and April to U.S. commander James D. Sherman, state run news agency KCNA reported.

The message was delivered over the phone in English, South Korean news agency Yonhap reported.

It also condemned the threat of new sanctions over North Korea's recent actions.

A United Nations military commission informed Pyongyang of the upcoming routine exercises, according to a joint statement from U.S. and South Korean military officials.

The commission also told North Korea that they are "not related with the current situations on the Korean Peninsula."

Around 10,000 U.S. forces will participate in Foal Eagle from March 1 to April 30. Key Resolve will involve 10,000 South Korean troops and 3,500 U.S. troops in exercises March 11 to 21.

Key Resolve will include U.N. troops and neutral supervisors.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
December 18, 2014 -- Updated 0117 GMT (0917 HKT)
Sources tell Evan Perez that U.S. investigators have determined North Korea was in fact behind the Sony hacking.
December 18, 2014 -- Updated 0148 GMT (0948 HKT)
Obama says people should "go to the movies" without fear, despite hackers' threats against venues that show "The Interview".
December 2, 2014 -- Updated 0035 GMT (0835 HKT)
CNN's Brian Todd reports on the hacking of Sony Pictures and whether North Korea could be behind it.
December 19, 2014 -- Updated 1550 GMT (2350 HKT)
As the U.S. gets ready to blame the Sony hack on North Korea, a troublesome question is emerging: Just what is North Korea capable of?
December 9, 2014 -- Updated 0157 GMT (0957 HKT)
A retired Silicon Valley executive and Korean War veteran was hauled off his plane at Pyongyang in 2013. Here's what happened next.
November 19, 2014 -- Updated 1057 GMT (1857 HKT)
A recent defector from North Korea tells of the harrowing escape into China via Chinese 'snakehead' gangs.
November 18, 2014 -- Updated 0039 GMT (0839 HKT)
CNN's Amara Walker speaks to a former North Korean prison guard about the abuses he witnessed and was forced to enact on prisoners.
November 18, 2014 -- Updated 0559 GMT (1359 HKT)
The chief of the Commission of Inquiry into North Korea's human rights says the world can no longer plead ignorance to the regime's offenses.
November 19, 2014 -- Updated 0034 GMT (0834 HKT)
Kim Jong Il's former bodyguard tells of the beatings and starvation he endured while imprisoned in the country's most notorious prison camp.
November 10, 2014 -- Updated 1834 GMT (0234 HKT)
Christian Whiton argues "putting the United States at the same table as lawless thugs isn't just morally repugnant -- it's ineffective".
October 11, 2014 -- Updated 0543 GMT (1343 HKT)
Despite tense relations, China benefits from Kim Jong Un's rule in North Korea. David McKenzie explains.
September 15, 2014 -- Updated 0851 GMT (1651 HKT)
North Korea has "the world's most advantageous human rights system" and citizens have "priceless political integrity", the country declared.
September 1, 2014 -- Updated 0852 GMT (1652 HKT)
Pro-wrestling, country clubs and theme parks are just some of the attractions North Korea wants you to see on a tightly controlled tour of the country.
ADVERTISEMENT