Kim Jong-un has ordered North Korea’s troops to be on a war footing as tensions with South Korea escalate following an exchange of shells – follow the latest updates
• Any war between North and South Korea “could go nuclear”
• Tensions had been rising after an exchange of artillery shells across the border
• North Korea accuses South Korea of being “war maniacs”
• South Korea given until 5pm on Saturday night to dismantle propaganda speakers
Pyongyang citizens “ready for whatever happens”
NK News has spoken to Norwegian film director Morten Traavik, who is currently based in Pyongyang.
“The mood in Pyongyang, just like I suppose it is down south in Seoul, is completely normal: People going about their business, cicadas chirping in the trees and the occasional propaganda mobile blaring patriotic songs, but that’s daily fare here anyway.”
” Of course, people are fully aware of the current situation as KCTV broadcasts regular news bulletins about the developments. But the ones I’ve talked to say that they’re ready for whatever happens.”
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called for restraint from both North and South Korea.
U.N. spokeswoman Eri Kaneko said: “[Ban Ki-moon] urges the parties to refrain from taking any further measures that might increase tensions. He also calls on parties to engage in dialogue to reduce tensions and to promote peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula.”
Andrea Berger, a security and nuclear weapons expert at RUSI (Royal United Services Institute), says she believes it is “highly unlikely” that North Korea will launch SCUD missiles directly at South Korea.
Instead, she told The Telegraph this afternoon, they would probably be fired eastwards in an attempt to escalate the situation and demonstrate their power to Seoul.
Who would win if North and South Korea went to war?
The Telegraph’s David Blair has been grappling with this conundrum today. He writes:
“North Korea certainly does have SCUDs, they were gifted to them by the Egyptians in the early 1980s. SCUD missiles have a range of approximately 320km. They are relatively simple and reliable and among the most widely used missiles worldwide. The blast radius is relatively small.”
“North Korea’s bloated armed forces outnumber those of its southern neighbour by a large margin. When it comes to soldiers and artillery pieces, North Korea enjoys a two-to-one advantage over its old enemy. Yet an abundance of soldiers carrying light arms does not translate into military dominance. North Korea’s armed forces might be immense, but their weapons and equipment are largely obsolete.”
To read this entire, informative article by James Rothwell and David Millward on August 21,2015 in Telegraph UK click on the link below.