North Korea promises ‘retaliatory punishment’ for the South

A self-propelled artillery unit conducts a firing drill at a training range in Paju, South Korea, 22 June 2020. EPA-EFE/YONHAP

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North Korea said on Monday that it had readied thousands of balloons and millions of leaflets in preparation for “retaliatory punishment” against South Korea.

The detail, in a state media report, came a day after North Korea said it was preparing to begin an anti-South Korea leaflet campaign following a series of vitriolic condemnations of Seoul because of anti-North Korea leaflets floated across the border.

Defectors in South Korea send such leaflets which criticise North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un for human rights abuses and his nuclear ambitions. The messages are usually attached to balloons or floated in bottles.

Analysts have said North Korea has been conducting a series of staged provocations aimed at forcing concessions from Seoul and Washington.

“The preparations for the largest-ever distribution of leaflets against the enemy are almost complete,” a report by the Korean Central News Agency said.

“Publishing and printing institutions at all levels in the capital city have turned out 12 million leaflets of all kinds reflective of the wrath and hatred of the people from all walks of life,” it said.

More than “3,000 balloons of various types, capable of scattering leaflets deep inside south Korea, have been prepared,” along with other means of distribution, KCNA added.

Inter-Korean relations have been frozen for months, following the collapse of a summit in Hanoi between Kim and US President Donald Trump early last year over sanctions relief.

Read more via Al Jazeera

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