Fox News on April 12, 2013 reported that North Korea reportedly warned Japan that Tokyo would be the first target if Pyongyang decides to play its nuclear card. Excerpts below:
The warning is said to be in response to Tokyo’s standing orders to destroy any missile heading toward Japan, according to Korean Central News Agency. Japan has deployed PAC-3 missile interceptor units around Tokyo to protect its capital and is taking North Korea’s rhetoric seriously.
“We are doing all we can to protect the safety of our nation,” chief Cabinet spokesman Yoshihide Suga said, though he and Ministry of Defense officials refused to confirm the reports about the naval alert, saying they do not want to “show their cards” to North Korea.
Japanese officials long have feared that North Korea not only has the means but several potential motives for launching an attack on Tokyo or major U.S. military installations on Japan’s main island.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told reporters in South Korea that“We will stand with South Korea and Japan against these threats. And we will defend ourselves,”.
Speaking beside Kerry, South Korea Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se called for more United Nations action against Pyongyang if it commits another provocation.
Kerry offered strong words of solidarity for South Korea, and praised South Korea President Park Geun-hye’s “bright vision” of a prosperous and reunified Korean Peninsula without nuclear weapons. By contrast, he said North Korea’s Kim, has a choice to make between provocation and returning to talks to de-escalate tension and lead to the end of its nuclear program.
Kerry said any talks with North Korea have to lead toward denuclearization.
They have to be really serious,” Kerry said. “No one is going to talk for the sake of talking and no one is going to play this round-robin game that gets repeated every few years, which is both unnecessary and dangerous.”