Russia Today — April 9, 2013
Pyongyang has issued a warning urging foreign nationals to evacuate South Korea, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported. The statement was followed by threats from North Korea of “thermonuclear” war on the Korean Peninsula.
North Korea has warned all foreign nationals to prepare to evacuate the South in the event of conflict. “We do not wish harm on foreigners in South Korea should there be a war,” Reuters quoted KCNA news agency as saying, citing the spokesperson for its Korea Asia-Pacific Peace Committee.
Further,“all international organizations, businesses and tourists” were told to “work out measures for the evacuation.”
The statement was followed by renewed threats of “thermonuclear” war on the Korean Peninsula, AFP reported.
This marks the latest escalation in Pyongyang’s rhetoric.
On Monday, a South Korean lawmaker visiting the US said that nuclear support from Washington is needed to protect against North Korea’s continued aggression and unpredictability, and to keep its neighbor in check.
Rep. Chung Moon-joon suggested that South Korea needs nuclear weapons of its own – not just to intimidate Pyongyang, but also to send a strong message to China.
Recent tensions in the Korean Peninsula further escalated after North Korea announced that 51,000 workers would be recalled from a joint industrial Kaesong zone shared with the South, a major severing of economic ties between the countries.
Tensions escalated further on Tuesday when North Korean laborers did not show up for work at the Kaesong joint industrial zone in the morning, effectively suspending operations. Earlier, Pyongyang refused to allow South Korean workers to enter the area, located a few kilometers inside the North’s territory.
Pyongyang issued another warning last week advising embassies in North Korea to consider evacuating in the event of war. Currently, about two dozen countries have embassies in North Korea; most have said there are no immediate plans to withdraw personnel.