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Just a day after threatening new nuclear tests and calling the U.S. its “sworn enemy,” North Korea has issued another threatening statement. This time, the government targeted South Korea, saying that it will go to war with its neighbor if it supports new UN sanctions.
“'Sanctions' mean a war and a declaration of war against us,” the statement on Friday read, reports Reuters.
This later statement comes after North Korea said earlier this week that it would not participate in any talks to end its nuclear program. On Thursday, it said that they plan on launching nuclear tests and said that “settling accounts with the U.S. needs to be done with force.” Later Thursday, the UN unanimously condemned the December rocket launch.
“If the puppet group of traitors takes a direct part in the U.N. 'sanctions,' the DPRK will take strong physical counter-measures against it,” Friday’s statement continued.
In response, South Korea said that it will continue to try talking with Pyongyang. Soul recently elected its new president, Park Geun-hye, who will soon take office. "President-elect Park makes it clear that North Korea's nuclear ambitions and further provocations against the South will not be tolerated," envoy Rhee In-je said in Switzerland.
“Whether North Korea tests or not, it's up to North Korea," said U.S. envoy Glyn Davies on Thursday, reported the Yonhap news agency, notes USA Today. “We hope they don't do it, we call on them not to do it. It will be a mistake and a missed opportunity if they were to do it.”
Later Thursday, the UN unanimously condemned the December rocket launch and agreed to more sanctions. The U.S. also sanctioned the Hong Kong trading company Leader International, due to its continued support of North Korea.