Kim Jong-un warns North Korea must be ‘fully prepared for confrontation’ with US

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The North Korean leader said his country must be ready for “dialogue and confrontation” with the US. He issued the stark warning during a meeting of senior leaders in Pyongyang.

The Korean Central News Agency, the state news agency of the country, reported that the leader highlighted the importance of protection.

The agency said Mr Kim “stressed the need to get prepared for both dialogue and confrontation, especially to get fully prepared for confrontation in order to protect the dignity of our state” and efficiently warrant a “peaceful environment”.

KCNA added that Mr Kim “called for sharply and promptly reacting to and coping with the fast-changing situation and concentrating efforts on taking stable control of the situation on the Korean peninsula.”

The report comes after world fears soared last month when North Korea began increasing its nuclear stockpile.

US Army General Paul LaCamera, the Biden Administration’s nominee to be the next commander of US Forces Korea (USFK), said North Korea “has not taken any concrete steps towards denuclearisation”.

He stressed that the country will continue to build its nuclear programme but will be unlikely to surrender its nuclear stockpile and production.

General LaCamera said: “Economic sanctions must be combined with a whole-of-government approach, including all elements of national power and the international community, to convince the [North Korean] regime to return to meaningful negotiations.

“While I do not know what will ultimately incentivise or dissuade the regime to denuclearise, maintaining a combat credible force that is regularly exercised at echelon is an essential tenet to engage North Korea from a position of strength in any discussion of incentives or disincentives.”

General LaCamera said North Korea presented “newer and developmental missile… and advanced ballistic fuel systems” last year.

Also last month, North Korea alleged that the Biden administration was maintaining a “hostile policy” towards the hermit state.

Kwon Jong Gun, a senior North Korean Foreign Ministry official, said talk of diplomacy was being used to hide the US’ “hostile policy”.

In a statement, he accused Washington of “intent to keep enforcing the hostile policy toward the DPRK as it had been done by the US for over half a century”.

Mr Kwon said the US President had “made a big blunder in the light of the present-day viewpoint”.

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