SEOUL – South Korea and the United States deployed 20 fighters in a “joint show of force” after North Korea launched eight short-range ballistic missiles on Sunday. Four US F-16s and 16 South Korean planes – including the F-35A, F-15K and Kf-16 – flew over the Yellow Sea during the exercises, Seoul’s military announced and reported by Yonhap. “South Korea and the United States have demonstrated their strong ability to strike quickly – and have repeated – accurately in the event of North Korean provocations.”
Meanwhile, the United States warned North Korea: a “quick and decisive” response if Pyongyang embarked on a nuclear test. These are the words that came from US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman after meeting with her South Korean counterpart, Cho Hyun-dong, in Seoul. High on the agenda, Yonhap News reported North Korea’s missile launches over the weekend, and the possibility that Pyongyang will go ahead with what will be its seventh nuclear test, its first since 2017.
Sherman noted that “any nuclear test would represent a complete violation of UN Security Council resolutions,” adding that there would be a “rapid and effective response to such a test.” “The whole world will respond loud and clear – he insisted – we are ready.”
Sherman also urged North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to focus on tackling the coronavirus pandemic “rather than” going ahead with “provocative, dangerous and destabilizing measures”.
He stressed that the United States “has no hostile intentions toward” Pyongyang. “We continue to urge you to put an end to provocative and destabilizing activities and – I repeat – to choose the path of diplomacy.” Sherman and Cho are planning a triplex tomorrow with their Japanese counterpart Takeo Mori. (Source: Adnkronos)
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