North Korea threatens to attack South without warning


South Korean protesters deface a North Korean flag during a rally against North Korea on April 15, 2013 in Seoul, South Korea.


Chung Sung-Jun

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea has unleashed a new storm of threats against South Korea, a reaction to a small public protest in Seoul in which effigies of the North's leaders were burned.

"Our retaliatory action will start without any notice from now," Pyongyang said in a statement through its official news agency. The statement, released by the Supreme Command of the Korean People’s Army, was followed by a new report by state media also threatening the United States.

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A Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that the North will “intensify unspecified military countermeasures” unless American forces stop conducting military drills, the Associated Press reported.

North Korea had dropped its threats against the United States and South Korea on Monday to celebrate the 101st anniversary of the birth of its first leader, Kim Il-sung. But the peaceful attitude did not last long, with the North now vowing "sledgehammer blows" against the South unless it apologizes for the effigies, the Guardian reported.

Anonymous hacktivists haven't been cowed. The group announced today that it disrupted five North Korean propaganda websites during the birthday celebration.

Tuesday is the second of three days of festivities. However, the revelries this year have turned out relatively quiet, without the military parades and unveiling of a new missile that took place on the Great Leader's last birthday.

Despite the most recent bluster against the South, the rhetoric has been quieter than in recent days.

The last time North Korea launched two assaults on the South in 2010, it offered no warning, and the attacks came as a surprise.