S Korea shows missile, says can strike North
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South Korea flexed its military muscle on Thursday by staging large military drills and disclosing a new cruise missile capable of hitting any target in North Korea, as the North became increasingly candid about its intentions to build intercontinental ballistic missiles tipped with nuclear warheads.
On Thursday, South Korea's political parties put aside their bickering over domestic politics and passed nearly unanimously a parliamentary resolution condemning the North's nuclear test. Its navy deployed destroyers and submarines off its east eastern to test their combat readiness.
South Korea started a similar naval drill off the western coast on Wednesday and planned on Friday to kick off live-fire drills involving rockets and artillery near the land border with North Korea.
Also on Thursday, the South's Defence Ministry offered a rare glimpse of its military capabilities by releasing a 50-second video clip that showed two cruise missiles blasting targets after they were launched by a South Korean submarine and destroyer. The missiles are believed to have a range of 620 miles.
"Our cruise missile shown today is a precision-guided weapon so accurate that it can be directed to smash through the window of a North Korean command post from anywhere on the Korean Peninsula," Kim Min-seok, a ministry spokesman, said.
Meanwhile, the North's state-run Rodong Sinmun newspaper, the most authoritative mouthpiece for the Pyongyang leadership, said in a commentary published on Thursday: "We no longer hide but publicly declare: If the imperialists have nuclear weapons, we must have them, and if they have intercontinental ballistic missiles, we must have them too."
North Korea uses "Imperialist" to refer to the United States.