Economy

North Korea conducts evacuation drills in anticipation of a war

North Korea conducts evacuation drills in anticipation of a war”

Earlier Friday, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis visited the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea, saying the U.S.is continuing to pursuing diplomacy as the preferred choice to resolve the crisis.

Tension between North Korea and the United States has been building in recent months following a series of nuclear and missile tests by Pyongyang. In 2013, the U.S military directed two B-2 stealth bombers over the region on a round-trip mission. Duterte claimed that allies must band together to stop North Korea's "violent" plans but also prepare in case of a devastating nuclear catastrophe. CENTCOM, however, failed to detail the flight path of the B-2 bomber.

The US Air Force base in Guam has received a total of 816,393 munitions assets valued at more than $123 million between August and September, according to the US military.

Some observers say the rare drills are a sign the Kim Jong-Un regime is feeling the gravity of the situation on the Korean Peninsula while other analysts said it was Pyongyang merely attempting to create the perception that it cares about its people.

Pyongyang has threatened to shoot down U.S. bombers if they violate the hermit state's air space.

North Korea leader Kim Jong Un watches the test of a new engine for an intercontinental ballistic missle (ICBM) at a test site at Sohae Space Center in Cholsan County, North Pyongan province in North Korea in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on April 9, 2016.

North Korea said that it has the right to develop a space program like any sovereign country.

Chinese geologists have warned North Korea that the consequences could be catastrophic if it conducts another test at the mountainous Punggye-ri nuclear facility, the South China Morning Post reports.

Although, one defector from North Korea, who lived in Pyongyang, told the news outlet he remembers these types of drills taking place "sometimes three times a year ... especially at the time of military exercises of [South Korea] and USA army".

In 1994, during a confrontation with Washington over Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions, daily air raid drills reportedly took place.

His comments came as he departed Monday for Japan where he plans to discuss North Korea's nuclear threats with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

"North Korea has accelerated the threat that it poses to its neighbours and the world through its illegal and unnecessary missile and nuclear weapons programs", he said, adding that US-South Korean military and diplomatic collaboration thus has taken on "a new urgency".



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