N Korea warns armistice 'void'

North Korea has said that ongoing military exercises between South Korea and the United States are tantamount to war and render the half-century old armistice on the peninsula "null and void".

    In a statement released on Tuesday the North Korean army warned that it "reserves the right to undertake a pre-emptive action for self-defense against the enemy at a crucial time it deems necessary to defend itself."

    The statement comes amid continued tensions over the secretive regime's military intentions and concerns that it may be preparing to test a nuclear weapon.

    Last month North Korea launched a series of missile tests, including of its long range Taepondong 2 missile.

    Peace treaty

    Although the Taepodong missile failed shortly after launch, the tests were condemned as provocative by countries such as the US and Japan.

    North and South Korea remain technically at war never having signed a peace treaty formally ending the 1950-53 Korean War.

    Instead the two countries have been engaged in an uneasy stand-off for more than 50 years under a UN-monitored armistice.

    North Korea frequently issues warnings that the Korean peninsula stands on the brink of a renewed war.

    Earlier it had said that the annual joint South Korean-US exercises, involving some 17,000 troops, would be seen as a declaration of war if they went ahead.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera + Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Sentenced to death for blasphemy: Surviving Pakistan's death row

    Sentenced to death for blasphemy: Surviving Pakistan's death row

    The story of a man who spent 19 years awaiting execution reveals the power of a false blasphemy claim to destroy a life.

    A story of exile and return: From Italy to Syria and back again

    A story of exile and return: From Italy to Syria and back again

    His grandfather fled fascist Italy during WWII and found refuge in Syria. Now Alberto and his family have returned.

    The Syrian women and girls sold into sexual slavery in Lebanon

    The Syrian women and girls sold into sexual slavery in Lebanon

    Syria's refugee crisis has shone a light on sex trafficking in Lebanon, where victims are often treated as criminals.