02:07 GMT28 February 2021
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    South Korean Defense Minister Han Min-koo stated that Pyongyang's missile threat against the Seoul metropolitan area where key facilities and population are concentrated is directly linked to the South Korea's security.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — North Korea’s nuclear and missile provocations pose a "direct and realistic" threat to South Korea, South Korean Defense Minister Han Min-koo said Friday.

    "Pyongyang's missile threat against the Seoul metropolitan area where key facilities and population are concentrated is directly linked to the nation's security," Han said during a visit to a military base, adding that the military should be well prepared, as quoted by the Yonhap news agency.

    Han also warned of the threat of nuclear development and intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM).

    Since the end of the Korean War in 1953, two Koreas have been divided by a demilitarized zone. The conflict is formally ongoing, as the sides signed an armistice, and not a peace treaty, at the end of the war. The process toward a potential Korean reunification was started by the 2000 North–South Joint Declaration, but the relations between the two Koreas later deteriorated as the North declared itself a nuclear power in 2005, and has since conducted a number of nuclear and missile tests.

    In the latest New Year's address to the nation, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said the country was finalizing preparations for another intercontinental ballistic missile test.

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    Tags:
    nuclear threat, Han Min-koo, South Korea, Democratic Republic of North Korea (DPRK)
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