N. Korea places troops on heightened vigilance

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Báo Tuổi Trẻ English - 31 month(s) ago 1 readings

N. Korea places troops on heightened vigilance

North Korea has placed troops on heightened vigilance, the South's defence minister said Friday as the failed rocket launch drew international condemnation.

North Korea North Korean soldiers parade in front a portrait of former North Korean President Kim Il-sung during a military parade in Pyongyang's central square in this photo taken by Kyodo on September 9, 2011 marking the 63rd anniversary of the state's founding. Photo: Reuters

North Korea has placed troops on heightened vigilance, the South's defence minister said Friday as the failed rocket launch drew international condemnation.

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"North Korean (troops) were placed on heightened vigilance," Defence Minister Kim Kwan-Jin told a parliamentary committee, according to his office, although it was not clear whether the move followed the failed launch.

Kim gave no details on the movement of North Korean troops but condemned the rocket launch as a provocation.

The minister suggested at a separate meeting with General James Thurman, head of US troops in South Korea, and US ambassador Sung Kim that the international community needs "proper sanctions", a defence ministry spokesman told AFP.

North Korea has said the rocket would place a satellite in orbit for peaceful research purposes, but Western critics saw the launch as a thinly veiled ballistic missile test, banned by United Nations resolutions.

The defence committee of South Korea's parliament adopted a resolution calling for a "firm" response to any additional provocations by North Korea.

The North should "immediately stop developing weapons of mass destruction and long-range delivery devices" that raise tensions on the Korean peninsula, the resolution said.

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