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Pyongyang defense chief blasts counterparts for talks on N.K. nukes

All News 22:25 June 09, 2016

SEOUL, June 9 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's defense chief on Thursday blasted his counterparts from South Korea, the United States and Japan for their recent talks on cooperating to counter Pyongyang's nuclear threats.

Pak Yong-sik, the minister of the People's Armed Forces, issued a statement on the Asia Security Summit that took place in Singapore last week. On the sidelines of the meeting, the defense ministers from the three countries, Han Min-koo, Ash Carter and Gen Nakatani, reaffirmed their commitment to step up their collaboration in the face of North Korean security threats, and to ensure thorough implementation of international sanctions against the North.

In an English-language statement carried by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), Pak said the participants of the meeting were mistaken if they were taking shots at North Korea.

"It is preposterous for those wholly responsible for ensuring peace and security on the Korean Peninsula to justify their attempt at aggression, blaming others," Pak said. "It is the height of shamelessness for them to mislead public opinion by terming (North Korea's) dignified nuclear force for self-defense and Strategic Force a 'threat' even at the international security conference."

Pak claimed that the United States is "the only nuclear criminal state in the world and the largest nuclear weapons state in the world," while Japan is "a militarist state which is vociferating about a military giant and nuclear weaponization." Pak added that South Korea was conducting its own missile launching test while also working on nuclear weaponization to counter Pyongyang.

"Openly revealed at the tripartite confab was the scenario to further intensify new hostile acts against the DPRK while taking issue with its nukes and missile 'threat.'" Pak added, referring to the North by its formal name, Democratic People's Republic of Korea. "Availing ourselves of this opportunity, we reiterate our stand that nuclear deterrent for self-defense is an all-powerful treasure sword tightly held by the DPRK to cope with the hostile forces' moves for invading it. Our warning is by no means an empty talk."

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