North Korea ruler Kim Jong Un threatens to deploy nukes amid tensions with U.S., S. Korea

Kim said the United States was "demonizing" North Korea

Updated: July 28, 2022 - 8:28am

North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un is threatening to deploy his nuclear weapons in a potential conflict against the United States and South Korea, claiming that the countries are heightening tensions in the region.

Kim made the threat in a speech Wednesday to veterans that marked the 69th anniversary of the end of the Korean War.

He apparently was attempting to boost the totalitarian dictatorship's internal unity amid economic problems related to COVID-19, state-run media reported Thursday, according to The Associated Press.

"Our armed forces are completely prepared to respond to any crisis, and our country’s nuclear war deterrent is also ready to mobilize its absolute power dutifully, exactly and swiftly in accordance with its mission," Kim said.

He has increasingly threatened to deploy weapons, but observers believe it is unlikely he actually would use them first against the superior U.S. military or its allies.

Kim said the United States was "demonizing" North Korea while South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol is following "confrontation maniacs" and "gangsters," making the conservative government more extreme than previous ones.

"Talking about military action against our nation, which possesses absolute weapons that they fear the most, is preposterous and is very dangerous suicidal action," Kim said. "Such a dangerous attempt will be immediately punished by our powerful strength and the Yoon Suk Yeol government and his military will be annihilated."