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‘Time to prepare for war’ – North Korean leader

Pyongyang must be ready to fight and win against all enemies, Kim Jong-un has said

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea needs to be ready to fight and win a war, the nation’s leader Kim Jong-un said during a visit to an elite military academy, the state news agency KCNA reported on Thursday.

Kim visited the Military and Political Academy in Pyongyang named after his father, Kim Jong-Il. The institution was established in 2020 to educate the most promising army officers.

“Now is the time to be more thoroughly prepared for a war than ever before,” Kim told students and staff during Wednesday’s tour of the facility. “The DPRK should be more firmly and perfectly prepared for an actual war – which should be won without fail – and not just a possible war,” he added.

Kim noted the unstable military and political situation in North Korea’s neighborhood and described the international situation as being “seriously aggravated due to ever-escalating violence and armed conflicts.”

Photos released by KCNA showed Kim and army officials inspecting the “operations study room,” which featured a scale model of the South Korean capital, Seoul, and maps of the Korean peninsula marking the locations of US troops.

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If the US and South Korea opt for military confrontation, “the DPRK will deal a deadly blow to the enemy without hesitation by mobilizing all means in its possession,” overpowering the enemy with “ideological, mental, militant, moral and tactical superiority,” Kim said. 

Kim’s tour of the facility coincided with parliamentary elections in South Korea, which saw the ruling coalition defeated in a landslide. Prime Minister Han Duck-soo and several top aides to President Yoon Suk Yeol have resigned in the wake of the vote, as did Han Dong-hoon, leader of the People Power Party.

Preliminary results showed Lee Jae-myung’s Democratic Party and its coalition partner winning a combined 175 seats in the 300-member National Assembly. 

The Korean peninsula has been split between the DPRK and the US-backed Republic of Korea since the 1953 armistice ended the combat phase of the Korean War. No peace treaty was ever signed, however. Almost 30,000 US troops are still based in South Korea.


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