US to bolster military defence of South Korea

Announcement by US military based on Korean Peninsula comes as North claims it is ready to launch nuclear war.

US to bolster military defence of South Korea

World Bulletin / News Desk

The cold war on the Korean Peninsula was reheating Saturday, based on comments from both representatives of Pyongyang and Washington.

Earlier in the day, U.S. Forces Korea announced plans via a press release to dispatch an additional Multiple Launch Rocket System battalion to South Korea in May.

Around 400 soldiers are set to join the nearly 30,000 American military personnel already stationed in the South.

The move is viewed as an effort to deter North Korea, but was overshadowed by comments made by the North's ambassador to the U.K.

Hyun Hak-bong's claim that Pyongyang is ready to use nuclear missiles at any time captured world headlines after emerging from London on Friday.

The statement flies in the face of the South Korean defense ministry's stance that North Korea has not yet reached the level of technology to pose that kind of threat - a view repeated by a ministry spokesperson on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Seoul faces a dilemma over whether to push for the deployment of an American-made missile defense system known as THAAD - despite firm opposition from China and Russia.

U.S. military chief General Martin Dempsey is expected to arrive in South Korea on Thursday for talks which could touch on a range of issues related to the threat posed by North Korea.

Pyongyang has repeatedly expressed its concerns about ongoing South Korean-American military drills - the current Foal Eagle exercise is scheduled to continue for the best part of April.

Aggressive North Korean rhetoric and repeated missile tests are also a reminder that the two sides remain technically at war, having never signed a peace treaty at the end of their 1950-53 conflict.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 21 Mart 2015, 10:19