Yoon warns N. Korea of 'larger price' for 'reckless' provocation
2024-07-18 07:42:00

President Yoon Suk Yeol delivers commemorative remarks during a ceremony marking West Sea Defense Day at the Navy's 2nd Fleet Command in Pyeongtaek,<strong></strong>  March 22. Yonhap

President Yoon Suk Yeol delivers commemorative remarks during a ceremony marking West Sea Defense Day at the Navy's 2nd Fleet Command in Pyeongtaek, March 22. Yonhap

President Yoon Suk Yeol warned Friday that North Korea will pay a "larger price" in the event it carries out a "reckless" provocation as tension ran high over the regime's continued weapons tests.

Yoon issued the warning as the nation marked West Sea Defense Day, which commemorates the 55 service members who died in action while defending the Northern Limit Line, the de facto maritime border between South and North Korea, between 2002 and 2010.

"Our military will maintain an ironclad readiness posture and firmly defend the Republic of Korea's freedom and the people's safety by responding immediately and overwhelmingly to any provocation," Yoon said during a memorial ceremony at the Navy's 2nd Fleet Command in Pyeongtaek, 60 kilometers south of Seoul.

"Should North Korea carry out a reckless provocation, it will pay a larger price for sure."

North Korea this week fired short-range ballistic missiles in violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions and conducted a ground jet test of what it said was a solid-fuel engine for a new type of intermediate hypersonic missile.

Tensions on the Korean Peninsula run high after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un issued a call in January to revise the country's constitution to define South Korea as a "primary foe and invariable principal enemy" and codify its commitment to "completely occupying" the South in the event of war.

"If North Korea thinks it can bring us to our knees with its provocations and threats, this would be a perfect misjudgment," Yoon said. "Our government and military will never take even a single step backward in the face of any provocation or threat by North Korea."

Yoon vowed to strengthen security cooperation with ally the United States, as well as trilaterally with the U.S. and Japan.

He also renewed his promise to support the nation's veterans and families of fallen service members until the end while making sure they receive the treatment they deserve.

West Sea Defense Day commemorates the 2002 inter-Korean naval skirmish off the border island of Yeonpyeong, the 2010 sinking of the corvette Cheonan blamed on a North Korean torpedo attack, and the North's shelling of Yeonpyeong in 2010.

Yoon called the incidents "brutal provocations that cannot be pardoned under any pretext." (Yonhap)

(作者:新闻中心)