In Pyongyang, businesses are open as usual and street stalls selling ice cream are crowded as residents took breaks under parasols from the summer Sunday.
Eight fighter jets – four F-16s from the United States Forces Korea and four South Korean F-15Ks – swept through the sky of South Korea earlier in the day in the latest show of force against North Korea, according to the South Korean military.
The talks, held inside the Demilitarized Zone, featured key players such as Hwang Pyong So, who is the reclusive regime’s leader’s deputy and political director of North Korea’s army. North Korean leader Kim Jo…
Said Pyongyang citizen Choe Sin Ae: “I think that the South Korean puppet gangsters should have the clear idea that thousands of our people and soldiers are totally confident in winning at any cost because we have our respected leader with us”.
As The Two-Way’s Eyder Peralta reported, North Korea stepped up the saber rattling on Friday by putting its frontline troops on a “semi-war state”.
Despite such highly charged rhetoric, which is itself not particularly unusual, activity in the capital remained calm, with people going about their daily routines.
Still, the North’s apparent willingness to test Seoul with military strikes and its recent warning of further action raise worries because South Korea has vowed to hit back with overwhelming strength should North Korea attack again.
It also comes after the reported firing of North Korean artillery shells on Friday.
It was unclear whether North Korea meant 5:30 p.m.in Seoul when it set its deadline for a military action.
Tensions between the two Koreas began rising after an investigation found that the North secretly planted land mines on the southern side of the border, which exploded and severely injured two South Korean soldiers early this month.
He said that South Korea continued to broadcast from its loudspeakers as the talks went on.
The first-high-level talks in almost a year between South Korea and North Korea have adjourned after a marathon meeting between senior military officials who have been pushed to the brink of confrontation.
It said it would make a decision on whether to halt them depending on the outcome of the talks.
The high-level meeting was first proposed by Pyongyang on Friday afternoon.
Truckloads of soldiers singing martial songs can occasionally be seen driving around the city, and a single minivan with camouflage netting was parked near the main train station for a time as the talks with South Korea began Saturday and are set to resume later Sunday. North Korea could do serious damage to Seoul – even rusty artillery, when plentiful and close-by, can be deadly – but a war would eventually destroy the Kim family.
Kim Jong-Un’s order to move to a war footing came after an exchange of artillery fire on Thursday that claimed no casualties but triggered a risky spike in cross-border tensions.
Aside from Beijing’s interest in maintaining peaceful ties with both Koreas, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had also expressed his concern.
“There’s a high possibility that the two sides will find common ground by each taking one step back as they agree on the gravity of the current situation”, he said.
Propaganda loudspeakers, placed in 11 locations along the DMZ, are still “in operation”, a South Korean Defense Ministry official told CNN.