North Korea’s state-run new agency quoted top officials today as saying the nation was “on the brink of war” with neighboring South Korea, and the government has also announced that it will be abandoning the nonagression pact between the two nations.
Experts say the move could be a preclude to a minor clash along the disputed maritime border, though predictions of impending clashes in the Yellow Sea have been common in recent months. And while rhetoric often outstrips reality on the tense peninsula, the latest moves are just another sign the situation is continuing to deteriorate.
Still, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak has sought to downplay concerns over the move, insisting that his nation has “affection” for the North and predicting negotiations “before long.” He also emphasized that such remarks from the North were not unusual.
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