North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho said Wednesday that President Trump “lighted the fuse of war” after the U.S. president’s speech at the United Nations last month, Russian state news agency Tass reports.
“By his belligerent and insane statement at the United Nations Trump, so to say, lighted the fuse of war against us,” Ri said. During Trump’s speech, he threatened to “totally destroy” North Korea and denounced North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
“We will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea,” Trump said. “If the righteous many don’t confront the wicked few, then evil will triumph,” he added, before repeating a nickname he gave Kim on Twitter. “Rocket Man is on a suicide mission for himself.”
Tass said North Korea’s foreign minister has described the country’s nuclear weapons and ballistic program as a “sword of justice” and represent a deterrent to protect the North from the United States.
Ri said North Korea’s forces have “inexhaustible power that won’t leave aggressor state America unpunished,” according to Tass. “Now it is the United States’ turn to pay, and all of our military servicemen and our entire people insistently demand that final scores be settled with the Americans only with a hail of fire, and not with words,” Ri added.
The remarks come a day after the U.S. military flew two strategic bombers over the Korean Peninsula.
Two B-1B Lancers took off from Andersen Air Force Base on the U.S. Pacific island territory of Guam on Tuesday to conduct a training mission with military allies Japan and South Korea near the Sea of Japan, according to the U.S. military.
The mission was a display of alliance between the three nations and their resolve to enhance security in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. The presence of the bomber crafts is part of a U.S. Pacific Command mission to ensure a quick and efficient response to various types of threats in the area, the U.S, military stated.
Trump and Kim have traded heated rhetoric for weeks as tensions remain high amid North Korea’s insistence it won’t back down over its nuclear weapons program. In recent months, North Korea has conducted its sixth nuclear test and fired two missiles over Japan.
Contributing: Jane Onyanga-Omara
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