North Korea has issued a forceful response to the deployment of a US naval strike group to the region, saying it would counter “reckless acts of aggression” with “whatever methods the US wants to take.”
In a statement provided to CNN by officials in North Korea, Pyongyang said the “current grim situation” justified its “self-defensive and pre-emptive strike capabilities with the nuclear force at the core.”
“We will make the US fully accountable for the catastrophic consequences that may be brought about by its high-handed and outrageous acts,” the statement said.
The Pentagon sent the 97,000-ton USS Carl Vinson with an escort of a guided-missile cruiser and two destroyers after the latest missile test by North Korea last week.
On Tuesday, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is expected to attend the country’s Supreme People’s Assembly, a high-profile gathering of the nation’s leading political figures.
The meeting comes days before North Korea celebrates the April 15 birthday of deceased leader Kim Il Sung, Kim’s grandfather — amid speculation that Pyongyang will mark the occasion with by testing missiles or possibly a nuclear device.