Despite the efforts of the U.S. secretary of state, John Kerry and the South Korean foreign minister, Yun Byung-se, to pressure Pyongyang to cease its hostility, yesterday North Korea threatened Japan with “nuclear fire” In an editorial published by the official Korean agency KCNA, in which it called such statements as ‘provocative’ saying that Tokyo could intercept a missile that threatens its territory.
“Japan is in the spotlight of our revolutionary army and if Japan makes the slightest gesture, the spark of war will first touch” the country, said the editorial.
The Japanese Defense Ministry declined to comment on these statements but said it would take “all the necessary steps to respond to any scenario.”
According to South Korean intelligence, the missile launch could occur next Monday, the day of the birth of the founder of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Kim Il-sung, who died in 1994.
Tokyo formally authorized its army to destroy any North Korean missile that threatens its territory and announced the installation of Patriot missile batteries in the center of the capital and its surroundings. It has also deployed destroyers in the Sea of Japan equipped with the Aegis radar system and means of interception.
Besides all aircraft come to the U.S. base in Okinawa will have to contact the U.S. Army, said Kyodo News agency, which could be a measure of protection against a potential attack.
The Secretary of State, John Kerry, on an official visit in Seoul, North Korea warned yesterday that a missile launch would be a “big mistake“. He expressed the full U.S. support to its ally South Korea, and described as unacceptable the Asian country’s war rhetoric and encouraged China to calm his neighbor, which is the only ally and economic support. Kerry travels to Beijing today and tomorrow to Japan.