News / Asia

Kim Jong Un: War Could Occur 'Without Any Prior Notice'

FILE - North Korean defector Park Sang Hak, right, carries a poster showing North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un during an anti-North Korea rally near the Unification Observation Post in Paju, South Korea
FILE - North Korean defector Park Sang Hak, right, carries a poster showing North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un during an anti-North Korea rally near the Unification Observation Post in Paju, South Korea
VOA News
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has instructed his military to boost its combat readiness, warning a war could break out "without any prior notice."

The state-run Korean Central News Agency reported Wednesday that Kim made the comments during a visit to a combat unit on Tuesday.

The move comes as North Korea's neighbors watch the communist country for signs of instability following a shocking purge of senior leadership in Pyongyang. Kim's uncle, Jang Song Thaek, thought to be his mentor and second in command, was executed earlier this month after being accused of trying to overthrow the state.

Tuesday, South Korean President Park Geun-hye made her own trip to a frontline guard post, telling troops Seoul would respond "mercilessly to any provocations."

Tensions regularly flare up between the two Koreas, which remain in a technical state of war; the 1953 agreement that ended hostilities between them was only a truce.

However, this December has been unusual in that Jang's execution was a rare admission of disunity within the ranks of the secretive North Korean leadership.

Many fear Pyongyang could escalate tensions with the West, possibly by a fourth nuclear test or a long-range missile test, in order to build internal unity.

North Korea conducted nuclear tests in 2006, 2009 and earlier this year. All were in violation of U.N. sanctions and received near universal condemnation. It has also carried out satellite launches that most analysts say are disguised long-range missile tests.

Recent commercial satellite imagery suggest North Korea has restarted a shuttered plutonium reactor and is making preparations at nuclear test and missile launch sites.

You May Like

In China, Mixed Signals on Ebola Controls

How authorities are monitoring at-risk individuals remains unclear, including whether there are quarantines for Chinese health workers returning from West Africa More

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Electionsi
X
October 31, 2014 4:10 AM
Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid