Korean Peninsula brought to brink of nuclear war in 2023, DPRK says
The Democratic People's Republic of Korea says 2023 brought the Korean Peninsula to the brink of nuclear war.
In a fiery address to the United Nations on Tuesday, Kim Song, the Permanent Representative of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) to the UN, described the year 2023 as "extremely perilous," warning that it had brought the Korean Peninsula closer to the brink of a potential nuclear conflict.
Song attributed this escalating danger to what he termed as the United States and its allies' reckless and persistent pursuit of a nuclear confrontation.
"Due to the ongoing and reckless saber-rattling by the United States and its foreign partners, the year 2023 will be remembered as an exceedingly hazardous period during which the military security situation in and around the Korean Peninsula edged dangerously close to the precipice of nuclear war," Song said during his address to the UN General Assembly.
Song also highlighted that, from the beginning of the year, both Washington and Seoul had been making what he called "hysterical remarks," advocating for the toppling of the leadership in the DPRK and ending its "occupation" of Pyongyang, which he argued was in violation of the United Nations Charter.
The DPRK's envoy went on to assert that the United States had been intensifying the risk of a nuclear conflict by creating a "Nuclear Consultative Group" and deploying nuclear submarines and strategic bombers, all capable of carrying nuclear weaponry, in and around the Korean Peninsula.
Kim Song emphasized that the perilous situation in the Korean Peninsula could be attributed to the United States' relentless pursuit of global dominance and also underscored the role played by the South Korean government in this context.
"Ever since the current administration took office, the entire Republic of Korea has effectively transformed into a military outpost of the United States," Song continued.
In response to the escalating threats to its sovereignty, Kim Song declared that the DPRK had been compelled to expedite its self-defense capabilities and would continue to do so as long as its sovereignty remained under threat.
Military drills in the South
This comes after South Korea conducted its inaugural military parade in ten years on Wednesday, highlighting its modern weaponry as tensions with the DPRK grow over increased provocations sponsored by the United States and joined by Japan, who recently formed a trilateral security alliance in the region.
Seoul typically holds the event every half-decade to commemorate South Korea's Armed Forces Day.
But while its prior parade was in 2013, ex-President Moon Jae-in opted in 2018 for a festive event over a military showcase as Washington under former US President Donald Trump aimed to break the icy ties with Pyongyang.
To emphasize Seoul's strong ties with the US, around 300 American military members marched alongside 4,000 South Korean soldiers through the downtown of the country's capital. Joining the parade were 170 military hardware, encompassing air and maritime drones, tanks, and missiles.
President Yoon Suk Yeol has worked since taking office in 2022 to bring the East Asian country closer to the US. In recent months, the historical partners have intensified military collaborations, most notably in integrating American nuclear weapons into South Korea's war strategy.
At a preceding Armed Forces Day event at an air base south of Seoul, Yoon praised the deepening defense relationship between the US and South Korea.
"If North Korea uses nuclear weapons, its regime will be brought to an end by an overwhelming response from the ROK-US alliance," he said then, repeating a warning the partners have issued in the past.
Chinese and Japanese senior officials were hosted in South Korea earlier this week, holding a trilateral meeting aimed at reassuring Beijing about the increased cooperation between Japan, South Korea, and the US.
Experts forecasted that Beijing might try to leverage trilateral trade ties to counter US incitement against the world's second-largest economy. Additionally, reports suggested China plans to promote people-to-people exchanges and enhance communication and dialogue on security and defense matters with Seoul and Tokyo.