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Wednesday, July 06, 2022, 12:31
Yoon warns of stern retaliation in case of 'DPRK provocation'
By Reuters
Wednesday, July 06, 2022, 12:31 By Reuters

In this photo provided by the Republic of Korea’s Presidential Office, President Yoon Suk-yeol, center, attends at the National Security Council meeting at the presidential office in Seoul, June 5, 2022. (ROK PRESIDENTIAL OFFICE VIA AP)

SEOUL – The Republic of Korea's President Yoon Suk-yeol ordered the military on Wednesday to "promptly and sternly" retaliate in case of any provocation from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea amid rumours Pyongyang could conduct its first nuclear test in five years.

Yoon, who took office in May, presided over his first meeting with top military commanders and called for strong capabilities to deter DPRK nuclear and missile programs, the presidential office said.

READ MORE: Suspected DPRK dam water release prompts evacuation, says ROK

The military meeting took place a day after US Air Force F-35A stealth fighters arrived in the ROK on their first publicly announced visit since 2017.

"President Yoon said strong defence capabilities should be ready to protect the country's security and national interest as the security uncertainties surrounding South Korea and Northeast Asia are growing more than ever," according to the presidential office.

The ROK is also referred to as South Korea, while the DPRK as North Korea.

ALSO READ: US, ROK, Japan leaders agree closer cooperation over DPRK

Last week, Yoon met with US President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida on the sidelines of the NATO summit in Madrid and agreed to explore further means to reinforce "extended deterrence" against the DPRK.

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