The North Korean leader made the comments during a speech to war veterans on the 69th anniversary of the end of the 1950-1953 Korean War.
According to the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), Kim said: “Our armed forces are completely prepared to respond to any crisis, and our country’s nuclear war deterrent is also ready to mobilise its absolute power dutifully, exactly and swiftly in accordance with its mission.”
He went on to accuse the United States of ‘demonising’ North Korea to justify hostile policies towards the country.
He said US-South Korea military drills show the US’s ‘double standards’ and ‘gangster-like’ aspects because it brands North Korea’s routine military activities — an apparent reference to its missile tests — as provocations or threats.
Kim branded new South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol ‘a confrontation maniac’ and claimed his government was led by ‘gangsters’.
Yoon, who took office in May this year, has been strengthening South Korea’s military alliance with the United States.
Kim said: “Talking about military action against our nation, which possess absolute weapons that they fear the most, is preposterous and is very dangerous suicidal action.
“Such a dangerous attempt will be immediately punished by our powerful strength and the Yoon Suk Yeol government and his military will be annihilated.”
Back in April, Kim said North Korea could pre-emptively use nuclear weapons if threatened and vowed to 'strengthen and develop' the nation's nuclear capabilities.
According to KCNA, Kim said: "In particular, the nuclear forces, the symbol of our national strength and the core of our military power, should be strengthened in terms of both quality and scale, so that they can perform nuclear combat capabilities in any situations of warfare, according to purposed and missions of different operations and by various means.
"The fundamental mission of our nuclear forces is to deter a war, but our nukes can never be confined to the single mission of war deterrent even at a time when a situation we are not desirous of at all is created on this land."
Kim went on to say that if 'any forces try to violate the fundamental interests' of North Korea, its nuclear forces 'will have to decisively accomplish its unexpected second mission' and that the nuclear forces 'should be fully prepared to fulfil their responsible mission and put their unique deterrent in motion at any time'.
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