North Korea said Monday its military has entered map coordinates of some conservative South Korean media offices as it threatened to strike their headquarters for their alleged insult to Kim Jong-un.
About 20,000 North Korean children pledged their allegiance to Kim as the North began a six-day festival on Sunday to mark the 66th anniversary of the Korean Children's Union (KCU).
In response, some South Korean media dismissed the celebration as part of the North's attempt to win support for Kim, who took over the country following the December death of his father, long-time leader Kim Jong-il. Channel A, a television arm of the Dong-a Ilbo newspaper, compared Kim to the late German dictator Adolf Hitler over the anniversary celebration. The North has long bristled at any outside criticism of its leader and has made similar threats against the South over the past several months, although no actual attack has occurred.
In reaction to the criticism, the General Staff of the Korean People's Army said the North is ready to bomb the Seoul headquarters of the Chosun Ilbo at coordinates of 37 degrees 56 minutes 83 seconds North latitude and 126 degrees 97 minutes 65 seconds East longitude. It also revealed the coordinates of the Joongang Ilbo and Dong-a Ilbo newspapers, as well as the KBS, MBC and SBS television stations and CBS radio. It is the first time the North has released coordinates of intended targets in South Korea.
The General Staff demanded apologies from President Lee Myung-bak, and threatened to be struck by the North otherwise. "If the Lee group recklessly challenges our army's eruption of resentment, it will retaliate against it with a merciless sacred war of its own style as it has already declared," the General Staff said in the ultimatum carried by the North's official Korean Central News Agency. Moreover, the General Staff also warned that the North is "fully ready for everything" and "time is running out."
The problem is Seoul, the South Korean capital city of more than 10 million people and home to South Korean media headquarters, is within range of North Korea's artillery.
South Korea responded to the blatant threats by urging North Korea to immediately stop attacks against the South's media outlets. The North's move "is a grave provocative act" to South Korea's freedom and democracy, said Unification Ministry spokesman Kim Hyung-suk.
Also Monday, Unification Ministry spokesman Kim Hyung-suk urged the North to immediately stop threatening the South's media outlets. He said the North's threat was a grave "provocation" against South Korea's free and democratic system.
There is no freedom of the press in North Korea where authorities use state media as a propaganda tool to strengthen personality cults of the country's leaders. And without freedom, there is advancement. NK's Kim Jong=-Un must seek to stabilize the country by reviving the economy, and maintain a cooperative relation with the outside world, instead of provoking, bringing hell on earth go all out on haywire.