April 24, 2024

North Korea warns of “shocking punishment” over upcoming drills: top official

Kim Yong Chol says he wants to believe U.S. defense chief Esper will follow through and cancel military drills with ROK

A high-ranking North Korean official who previously oversaw relations with the U.S. issued a statement on Thursday expressing hope that Washington and Pyongyang could restart their long-stalled diplomatic dialogue — and warned of "shocking punishment" if the U.S. goes through with a "hostile provocation" against the North.

The statement, attributed to Kim Yong Chol, a vice-chairman in the ruling party Central Committee and head of the DPRK's Korea Asia-Pacific Peace Committee (KAPPC) — an official organization dealing with inter-Korean affairs that falls under the Workers' Party United Front Department (UFD) — focused on an upcoming, annual joint military exercise with South Korea that the North vehemently opposes.

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