North Korea has criticized a military cooperation agreement between the US, South Korea and Japan, saying Washington is trying to create a NATO-like alliance in Asia.
“The facts clearly show that the real purpose of the US spreading rumors about the ‘threat from North Korea’ is to make an excuse to establish military superiority in the Asia-Pacific region,” the news agency said. KCNA Today quoted a spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of North Korea as saying. “The current situation requires us to develop a national defense system to proactively deal with the rapidly deteriorating security environment.”
US President Joe Biden, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol met on the sidelines of a NATO summit last week and agreed on the progress of North Korea’s nuclear and missile programmes. North Korea poses serious threats, not only to the Korean peninsula, but also to East Asia and the world.
The three leaders vowed to study other measures to strengthen the “deterrence capability” of North Korea.
North Korea this year conducted a series of missile tests with unprecedented intensity. Observers speculate that Pyongyang is still preparing for a nuclear test.
“The deterrence capabilities of the Japan-US and the US-ROK alliance need to be upgraded as part of an essential effort to strengthen the tripartite partnership between Japan, the US and South Korea,” Prime Minister Kishida said. .
Relations between Japan and South Korea have long been strained by memories of the Japanese occupation of the Korean peninsula from 1910 to 1945.
Relations have deteriorated further under former South Korean president Moon Jae-in, with territorial and historical controversies. The two countries even ended an intelligence-sharing pact. However, the new Prime Minister Yoon has expressed his desire to repair the bilateral relationship and Prime Minister Kishida seems to agree to this.
Vu Hoang (Theo CNN)