North Korea’s military said on Monday it would make a “physical response” to a move by the US and South Korea to deploy the advanced Thaad missile defence system to the Korean peninsula.
The US and South Korea said on Friday the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (Thaad) anti-missile system would be used as defence against North Korea’s growing nuclear and ballistic missile capabilities.
The announcement was the latest move by the allies against the North which conducted its fourth nuclear test this year and launched a long-range rocket, resulting in tough new UN sanctions and a series of bilateral sanctions against it.
“There will be physical response measures from us as soon as the location and time that the invasionary tool for US world supremacy, Thaad, will be brought into South Korea,” the North’s military said in a statement.
“It is the unwavering will of our army to deal a ruthless retaliatory strike and turn [the South] into a sea of fire and a pile of ashes the moment we have an order to carry it out,” the statement carried by the official KCNA news agency said.
The North frequently threatens to attack the South and US interests in Asia and the Pacific.
The move to deploy the Thaad system, which drew a swift and sharp protest from China, came a day after the US Treasury Department blacklisted leader North Korean leader Kim Jong-un for human rights abuses.