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Neighbors brace as N. Korea marks party foundation day

Jiji Press SEOUL/WASHINGTON (Jiji Press) — North Korea marked the ruling Workers’ Party of Korea’s 72nd foundation day on Tuesday as Japan, South Korea and the United States braced for a further provocation by the reclusive country, such as an intercontinental ballistic missile test.

North Korea has seemed to be preparing to carry out a provocation since signs of this were detected before Wednesday, according to an official at South Korea’s presidential office.

A South Korean military official told a press conference on Tuesday that the military was maintaining the highest level of vigilance against a possible North Korean provocation while closely monitoring the North Korean military’s movement.

Japanese, U.S. and South Korean defense officials also think that Pyongyang may conduct some provocative acts around Columbus Day in the United States on Monday.

“You [the U.S. Army] have got to be ready to ensure that we have military options that our president can employ, if needed,” U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis said during a lecture in Washington on that day.

The North Korean party’s newspaper published an editorial on the front page on Tuesday, stressing that the country should continue to pursue the dual approach of pushing forward nuclear and economic development.

In the previous day’s edition, the Rodong Sinmun daily warned that Japan would be a target for massive North Korean military strikes if it tries to take advantage of the U.S. hostility against North Korea.Speech

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