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North Korea’s Kim urges military to prepare for combat

25 December 2013 9:49

341791_North-Korea

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un has said that a war could break out without “any prior notice” on the Korean Peninsula, calling on the military to bolster its combat readiness.

Kim visited the Command of Large Combined Unit 526 in the western city of Nampo on Tuesday, the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Wednesday.

“He instructed the unit to put utmost spurs on rounding off its combat readiness… always bearing in mind that a war breaks out without any prior notice,” KCNA also said.

The call came at a time of high tensions on the Korean Peninsula following the execution of Jang Song-Thaek, Kim’s uncle and the vice chairman of the National Defense Commission.

Jang, married to the leader’s late father’s sister, was executed on December 12 immediately after a special military trial, according to KCNA.

The news agency described Jang a “traitor for all ages,” saying he had committed hideous crimes such as “attempting to overthrow the state by all sorts of intrigues and despicable methods with a wild ambition to grab the supreme power of our party and state.”

Jang was often pictured beside Kim and referred to as the unofficial number-two of the country.

South Korea and the United States have warned of possible provocative acts by Pyongyang following the execution.

On Tuesday, South Korea’s President Park Geun-hye visited a frontline guard post, calling for “watertight security readiness” as the situation over the border was “ominous.”

“We should react sternly and mercilessly to any provocations by North Korea,” she also said.

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