Seoul says it is studying ways to deter Pyongyang

Seoul, Oct 13 (EFE).- South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol said Thursday that Seoul is studying “various options” on how to strengthen the so-called extended deterrence offered by Washington in the face of Pyongyang’s weapons advances.

“There are various opinions in our country and in the United States concerning expanded deterrence, and so I am carefully listening and considering various options,” Yoon told reporters in remarks carried by Yonhap news agency.

The South Korean president responded to a question that referred to an article published today by Chosun, the country’s main newspaper. It said Yoon’s government would have asked the US for the continued deployment and in turn of different strategic assets of the Pentagon, such as aircraft carriers or submarines, if Pyongyang carries out a new nuclear test.

The so-called extended deterrence is a commitment made in May by Washington with Seoul that consists of sending US strategic assets to the Korean peninsula in a “coordinated manner and when necessary” based on the actions of the northern regime.

Yoon’s words come hours after North Korean media reported that the regime on Wednesday tested two long-range cruise missiles belonging to military units that operate tactical nuclear weapons.

Today’s is the eighth launch of this type that Kim Jong-un’s regime has carried out since September, in what is a series of tests that seek to test the tactical nuclear weapons systems of the North Korean army in response to the recent maneuvers of a US aircraft carrier in waters off the Korean peninsula.

Many analysts believe that new North Korean tests are on the horizon, including a new underground nuclear detonation, which would be the first since September 2017.

North Korea, which has kept its borders completely closed since the start of the pandemic, approved a major weapons modernization plan in 2021 and has rejected offers to resume dialogue by South Korea and the US.

In turn, satellites have detected that the hermetic country has been preparing for months to carry out a new atomic test in Punggye-ri (northeast of the country). EFE


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